Zohiko Fine Lacquerware

The real deal, not the plastic stuff, from a renowned store established in 1661

Zohiko (象彦), which traces it roots to 1661, makes a wide range of lacquerware ranging from luxurious artistic pieces inlaid with gold and mother-of-pearl to simpler pieces suitable for daily use. Here you’ll find bowls, trays, chopsticks, combs and hairpins, ornamental plaques, jewelry boxes, inkstone boxes, kaleidoscopes (one of our favorites), and much more, all handcrafted from wood coated with multiple layers of lacquer from Japanese lacquer trees (not the plastic stuff). Zohiko is also famous for maki-e, a technique of painting designs on lacquerware then dusting with gold or silver powder or mother-of-pearl to create beautiful pictures. The 8th generation owner and master craftsman, Hikobei VIII, started a School of Maki-e Art, which is no longer in operation but Zohiko occasionally exhibits some of the designs for maki-e from its collection of 5,000 pieces. Prices range from very expensive for intricate works of art to under 10,000 yen for regular tableware. Of the regular tableware, the lacquered bamboo trays in beautiful shades of black, red, gold, or silver, and bowls/cups/trays with maki-e of cute elephants designed for children caught our eye.


Regular tableware: JPY 2,000 - 10,000 and up
Ornamental/artistic pieces: JPY 10,000 - 918,000+

Author: say1

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