Masakazu Ishihara

Small chest of drawers with stripe design in urushi carving.

  • Lacquerware
  • Presented in 2015
  • H 21.5 x W 24.0 x D 15.0 cm
  • $14,006

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I devised a way of opening the box so that the design would change depending on the angle, and the patterns would look as if they were connected however the box is opened. I made hinges and attached them in 4 places on the sides of the box. I made the box so that the design of the paulownia chest, the urushi carved parts and ivory handle would look especially beautiful when the box is opened fully.
Kiso cypress is used for the base, and for the parts where the metal fittings of the hinges are set, mortise-tenon joints are made by inlaying black urushi carved wood in the Japanese cypress wood.
By doing this, the metal fittings of the hinges are detachable, making the finish of the piece precise and detailed from the base, undercoating up to the decorations.
For the decoration, the 0.8 mm thick navy blue and black lacquered wood strips are pasted alternately. In the middle, white pearl oyster shells and black lacquered wooden parts both 0.8 mm thick are pasted to finish the design of the box as a whole.

Category Lacquerware
Year Presented 2015
Period of creation 7 months
Dimensions H 21.5 x W 24.0 x D 15.0 cm
Exhibition The 62nd Japan Traditional Kōgei Exhibition

Masakazu Ishihara

photo Masakazu Ishihara

My work is to produce urushi lacquerware, a Japanese traditional craft. From approximately 6,000 years ago, when lacquerware started to be used in daily life, through to the present day, its techniques have been developed into one of the applied fine arts. I am exploring unconventional, new, and innovative lacquerware for the future. While using the most advanced techniques of this traditional craft, I aim to create pieces that beautifully match and can be used in modern life.