All the Basics of Lacquerware

Beautiful Lacquerware 'Shiiki'

Kawada, Fukui
Carve out a Bowl
¥350,000 ~

You will visit the Kawada district in Fukui Prefecture, Japan, renowned for its lacquerware, and have the opportunity to immerse yourself in the traditional art of Japanese tableware production. In a single day, you'll visit three skilled craftspeople, each specializing in different steps of lacquerware production. You will witness their craftspersonship, and with their expert guidance, create your own unique bowls or lunch boxes. Typically, the world of lacquerware involves a complex, time-consuming process spanning several months. However, this tour streamlines the experience, allowing you to explore three key steps in a condensed timeframe. After each artisan completes your work, your creations will be sent to you by mail, ensuring you can cherish and enjoy the fruits of your trip.

The origin of Echizen Shikki

The origin of Echizen Shikki is said to date back to about 1500 years ago. The 6th century, the end of the Kofun period. When the 26th Emperor Keitai was still a prince, he was ordered by a painter in the Katayama village (now Katayama-cho, Sabae City, Fukui Prefecture) to repair the broken crown. The priest repaired the crown with lacquer and presented a black bowl, and the prince was impressed by the splendid workmanship and encouraged him to make lacquer ware in the Katayama village. This is said to be the beginning of today's Echizen Shikki.

As a major lacquer ware producing area

In the middle of the Meiji era, Echizen Shikki will reach a major turning point. Until then, most of the products were bowls called Marubutsu, but now we are also making dishes such as Kakumono. Since then, the product lineup has diversified at once, including heavy boxes, hand boxes, trays, confectionery boxes, and vases. The production area has expanded to the entire Kawada area, and the lacquer ware produced there has come to be called Kawada-nuri. Against the background of these diverse product groups, we set out to develop a sales channel for commercial lacquer ware used in inns and restaurants while establishing a mass sales system, and this was a great success. Having expanded into large consumption areas such as Nagoya and Osaka, Kawada Nuri became widely used as Echizen lacquerware.

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Artisan of Shaping Wood
Masayoshi Shimizu
With a career spanning approximately 70 years as a woodworker, Masayoshi Shimizu is a top-class professional. They possess the ability to shape wood effortlessly using tools they maintain themselves, and can reproduce any form with precision.
Artisan of Lacquering
Tachiyo Kajiwara
Tachiyo Kajiwara runs a studio dedicated to the lacquerware lacquering process with their father. They hold a deep respect for and preserve the lacquering techniques passed down from their parents. In addition to production, they also undertake repair work for lacquerware.
Artisan of Painting Makie
Naganobu Komamoto
With a career spanning approximately 50 years as a maki-e artist, they have dedicated themselves to the advancement of Echizen lacquerware techniques and the nurturing of successors. They are a top-tier artisan who relentlessly explores the possibilities of maki-e with an unwavering spirit of exploration.

Workshop Courses