What is Echizen Lacquerware?
(Kawada-cho, Sabae-shi, Fukui Prefecture)
When Emperor Keitai came to this area some 1500 years ago, he commissioned the artisans to repair a broken crown and they presented him with a black lacquer bowl. The Emperor, so impressed by its brilliant luster, greatly encouraged its production. This is considered the beginning of Echizen Lacquerware. From that time onward, seemingly all at once, lacquerware diversified into bowls, trays, and tiered boxes, its production area was expanded, and it came to be called “Kawada Lacquering”. Presently, Echizen Lacquerware accounts for 80% of all commercial lacquerware produced in Japan.
What is Makie? （ 蒔絵について）
What is maki-e? Of the many processes that go into the final stage of lacquerware, the chosen technique will bring the most out of the piece. Lacquerware is decorated via advanced techniques that see the artist using a lacquer-soaked brush to draw patterns. Gold and silver powder are sprinkled over the top of these patterns and are repeatedly polished to bring out its luster. ‘Hiramaki-e’, ‘Takaagemaki-e’, and ‘Togimaki-e’ are among these various techniques, and through their proper usage, it is possible to express their three-dimensional beauty.
What is urushie? （ 漆画について）
At first glance, an urushi-e, or a lacquerware painting, may appear to look like an oil painting. However, the distinguishing element between the two is in the materials used in their creation. Urushi, a natural resin coating material made of processed tree sap collected from the Japanese lacquer tree, is used for lacquering and adhesives. Pictures painted with color added to lacquer are called “urushi-e”. Another difference from oil painting is urushi is impacted by factors such as the weather or the environment. The drying process is affected by humidity, so a great deal of time and effort goes into completing even a single piece. Finally, urushi possesses a special characteristic in which its coloration subtly changes over time lending it a sense of a mystery.
Message from Mr.Hamada
I have been without my sense of hearing since I was born. My usual means of communication are sign language and writing. I have found my way of life, even in a world devoid of sound, where urushi-e along with my brush expresses my thoughts, feelings, and experiences. Nothing would make me happier than people would develop an interest in the traditional craft of lacquer art through this urushi-e.
Any inquires about Makie or Urushie, kindly send us an e-mail, or fax to us. We will get back to you shortly.