Shimadzu Satsuma Kiriko Glassworks

Refined Kagoshima craftsmanship

Watch master craftsmen blow and cut Satsuma Kiriko crystal glass right before your eyes, then marvel at the pinnacle of Kagoshima’s traditional craftsmanship at the gallery shop next door. See each stage of the production of this unique traditional craft product, and be amazed at the skill and concentration of the craftsmen who make it.

Satsuma Kiriko Glassworks Japanese artisans

Sparkling crystal glass lost for 100 years

The production of Satsuma Kiriko was started at Sengan-en in 1851 by the 28th head of the Shimadzu family, Nariakira. With the death of Nariakira in 1858, and the destruction of the workshops during the Satsuma Rebellion of 1877, production of Satsuma Kiriko was stopped and the glass blowing and cutting techniques were lost for over 100 years.

satsuma kiriko crystal glass craftsman

Rediscovering the secrets of the past

In 1985 Shimadzu Limited began research into reproducing Satsuma Kiriko and built a workshop the following year. After intensive research into the original techniques, production was started, and this previously lost craft was brought back for the world to enjoy. Watch our skilled craftsmen blowing and cutting Satsuma Kiriko up close, and see the production process from moulten glass, to the sparkling finished product.

Opening times
Break times
Closed on
Third Sunday of each month
仙巌園 庭園

The Gardens

Delight in the contrast between the raw power of active volcano Sakurajima and the 12 acres of calming traditional gardens. Discover peaceful ponds, bubbling streams, mysterious shrines, tea rooms, a bamboo grove, and a mountain hiking trail with a breathtaking panoramic view of the bay and volcano beyond.

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