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Japanese Kumiki Puzzles

Kumiki is a Japanese word which means "to join wood together". In Japan, the term "kumiki" refers to several different varieties of woodcraft, especially figural wooden interlocking puzzles or, in a broader sense, any wooden construction toy. They are also known as "burr puzzles." Each puzzle is handcrafted, and each is displayed as a small work of art, created in precision as is evident in how exact the puzzle pieces together.

These puzzles may have been used by master woodworkers as they tutored their apprentices in the art of constructing wooden buildings using interlocking pieces in the absence of metal parts or fasteners.

Tsunetaro Yamanaka (1874-1954) was the first craftsman to design and construct puzzles that resembled building and vehicles as well as abstract shapes like spheres and cubes. His descendants continued this kumiki tradition, still creating new puzzles including animal shapes. Today, Tadaaki Yamanaka, great grandson of Tsunetaro, continues his work.

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OUR LATEST BLOG POST
Posted: 2017-10-16 17:59:11
"The Traditional" Puzzle Box by Stickman !
"This week we were very fortunate to receive a #32 Stickman “The Traditional” Puzzle Box.  We have a number of other Puzzles by Rob Yarger (Stickman) in our collection, so when the opportunity arose, we went all in without any doubt.  We were NOT disappointed! We have always had an affinity for Japanese style puzzles and a love for Stickman’s works, so it seemed to be ..." Read more
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