Enjoy the new daily life with "Japanese Hybrid Art" from Minami Aoyama, Tokyo, JAPAN

漆芸家・楠田直子 Japanese lacquer artist KUSUDA Naoko




日本の魅力はなんだろかと改めて考える機会が多い中、漆があったという事にふと気付きました。帰国し、大西長利氏主宰 願船漆工房の門を叩き、初めて漆液を見た時、その美しさ、神秘さに感激しました。そして今、自然の素材を相手に、制作出来る喜びを感じています。


My wish
When I work with my creation, I continue embracing the lacquer culture nurtured by our predecessors from ancient times to present day.My first encounter with Urushi was when I saw the black Urushi sap, the sap that looks as if it quietly whispers as it was alive. When I create my art work using this sap, the life of Urushi tree, there is a moment when it abandons my hands and gets filled with its original energy. This makes me realize that the art work I am creating is through Blessing of Nature, the life of Urushi. Never forgetting the beauty within Urushi, I aspire to create a “work of art for everyday use” through “Kanshitsu” technique.

My encounter with Urushi
After graduating from Musashino Art University, I went to Italy to study design.
While I had many opportunities to think about Japan's beauty, I realiezed that Japan had Urushi. On returning to Japan after a year, I knocked on Master Nagatoshi Onishi's door and was trained under him for 3 years. The very first time I saw Urushi Sap, I was moved by its beauty and mystery. Now I feel the happiness of working with this natural material.

What is Kanshitsu (dried lacquer) technique?
The technique of Kanshitsu is created by adding layers of Linen material coating with natural adhesive such as wheat Urushi and glue Urushi on the mould. When the ideal thickness has been created, the Urushi coated linen layers is released from the mould. It is reported that Kanshitsu technique was introduced to Japan in the early 7th century (Nara period) when trade with China became prosperous. The technique was used for the production of Buddha statues because of its light weight and durability. Typical Kanshitsu Buddha statues include the Ashura statue at Kofukuji Temple and the Ganjinwajozajo statue at Toshodaiji Temple.
"Japan" has also the meaning of “URUSHI".