Writing box (suzuribako), 1860s

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Nakayama Komin is considered one of three great late lacquerers in Japan, together with Shibata Zeshin and Shirayama Sho_sai. Originally from Edo (Tokyo), Komin was a pupil of Hara Yo_yu_sai, one of the best lacquerers of the early 19th century.

Towards the end of his life, Komin became interested in lacquerware from Japan's distant past, adopting many motifs he discovered on 12th and 13th century pieces. Here, he adorned this writing box with a pattern on lotus blossom petals. A shower of lotus petals was a common motif on early Buddhist-related lacquerware where it symbolized Shakyamuni's teachings. In addition to its beautiful design, this box is remarkable because it still retains all of its original parts, including a stone on which ink was ground, a water dropper, two brushes, a knife and an awl.

Writing box (suzuribako)
Artist Life
1808 - 1870
Accession Number
Curator Approved

This record has been reviewed by our curatorial staff but may be incomplete. These records are frequently revised and enhanced. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email collectionsdata@artsmia.org.

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