Christofle launches MOOD creations in collaboration with one of the most acclaimed Japanese lacquer and special craft artists, Junichi Hakose. This partnership will give rise to six exceptional creations, each in a limited edition.
An extraordinary art
Japanese lacquer art, or urushi, dates back to protohistoric times, around 5000 BC, and became especially popular during the 8th century. It was originally used as a protective and decorative varnish for any array of objects used in Buddhist temples. The development of techniques and art forms eventually led to the rise of Maki-e, a design term that refers to the combining of lacquer with other decorative elements in Japanese art.
Maki-e means “sprinkled picture” and involves sprinkling gold or silver powder on the urushi while it is drying to create beautiful designs.
Each work of urushi art requires tireless hours and meticulous precision. The process entails careful application of many layers of lacquer, extended periods of drying in between each one, and the incorporation of decorative elements, all of which can take months to complete. Characterised by a range of lacquer techniques and several unique forms of beauty, this traditional lacquer is extremely durable. In fact, testifying to its unparalleled quality is the fact that many of the pieces from hundreds of years ago still retain their glossy lustre.
The MOOD creations
“The motifs selected for the themes are all traditional Japanese patterns. I incorporated into these works the ‘new traditions’ that I want to express in the vermillion, blur, lines, gold colour, expression, and space.” Junichi Hakose
The six creations feature chrysanthemums, cherry blossoms, fortune treasures, dragons, phoenixes, Pegasus and butterflies. Moreover, the design is also featured on the handles of the 24 pieces of flatware found inside the Mood case.
“I want to continuously give new form to this tradition and pass it on to the next generation. It is important for me, someone who is alive now, to draw and hand down things to the next generation in order to leave something behind. I drew something new within tradition and will hand it down to the next generation as a new tradition.” Junichi Hakose