A design using the tree itself as motif. The idea for the design was taken from the size and shape of the tree. His thinking in creating this piece is that “I want to make furniture that is fun to use and that cannot be found anywhere else.” He uses traditional techniques called “hozo (tenon)” and “tome (stationary)” and calculates comfort in use.
- Question 1What kind of furniture do you make as a Master in Okawa?
- I make unique furniture that people enjoy seeing. A piece of furniture can change the atmosphere of the room it’s in. I want to make furniture that adds joy to people’s lives. My idea originates from the material (tree). I examine the tree and think of the best way to make use of its shape. I am a furniture maker, and the furniture must be useful and beautiful. I make utmost use of traditional techniques to make strong and comfortable furniture.
*Master in Okawa: A system employed in Okawa city to certify artisans with outstanding skills and insight and recognize them as Masters in Okawa. Of the many artisans living in Okawa city, only 8 persons are given the title Master in Okawa.
- Question 2What was your honest thought when first asked to make “Cat Furniture”?
- At first I thought all I would have to do would be to make it smaller. But imagining users (cats), I decided to make the bench with the seat set up at higher place. Cats jump up high and probably like to look down from above. I’ve only had dogs as pets so I really don’t know how cats would feel about using my furniture, though…(laugh).
- Question 3What are you committed to when making cat furniture?
- There is nothing special about each piece of furniture I make, but I do want to make it durable. I don’t use nails or a dowel but assemble the pieces using the traditional method of tenon setting. This traditional method makes utmost use of the properties of wood to make strong and durable furniture. The flow of backrest is made to match the curve of the seat. You can make a straight cut with a machine, but curved ones can only be done by hand. Curves give it a natural appearance.
- Question 4What is your view of the future?
- I always like to make furniture with an impact that surprises customers. I love it when customers coming to my shop enjoy seeing them. I want to think and rethink to come up with new ideas. Putting myself in the user’s shoes, I’d like furniture to be “one that can be handed down to our children’s and grandchildren’s generation.” I would love for users to say, “Grandpa used this furniture.” I want to continue making furniture using traditional techniques that is long-lasting and requiring no repair.
457-1 Mitsumaru, Okawa City, Fukuoka Prefecture