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Akito AKAGI 赤木明登 was born in Okayama, Japan. He started his career as a magazine editor at a publishing company. After that, he moved to Wajima in 1988, and he became an apprentice to a base-coating master of Wajima lacquerware, Susumu Okamoto, in 1989. Akagi owns a studio and works independently since 1994. He gained international recognition and selected as one of the “twelve contemporary Japanese lacquerware artists”. 

AKAGI is advocating that lacquer art should be an integral part of everyday life. He has been recognised as one of those who actively promote Japanese lacquer making in a contemporary context. His inspiration comes from those pieces of the old days and ancient times, which he found in temples or locally in Wajima. AKAGI’s works blend traditional aesthetics with contemporary style. 

Three-tiered Lacquer Box in Black by Akito AKAGI

  • The oldest lacquerware discovered dates back to the Warring States period (403-221 B.C.). the craft has been transferred to Japan, Korea, and other parts of Southeast Asia. The value of a piece of lacquerware only begins with the materials used to make it. A high quality piece of lacquerware requires the skills of several different elements: lacquer, layers, core materials, decoration, colours, design and process.

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