One interesting aspect of Japanese culture is that they tend not to distinguish between an “artist” and a “craftsman”. I think in the West we often link craftsmen with those people who make functional objects and artists on the other end of the spectrum, often making one off pieces or very expressive works.
As someone who can see both sides I still find myself compartmentalising these in to two separate categories. Saying that, lacquer artist Tomoaki Nakano really does break down this barrier. Sometimes you see functional works that are so exquisite they change category altogether and become beautiful art objects that can also be used. A strange and rare phenomena.
I’ve been speaking with Tomoaki for quite a while and have been a fan of his work for many years. It’s great then to be able to showcase a small selection in the shop and give others the chance to own a true piece of art made by this master craftsman. Enjoy.