Third-generation woodworker Shuji Nakagawa at Nakagawa Mokkouegi in Shiga used a 700-year-old technique called Ki-Oke (or bucket-making) to craft these vases—in an edition of 30 unique pieces. Today there are just a few of these traditional artisans left—and unlike many of his peers, Nakagawa also uses the technique to create more modern objects like these. For this particular commission, we asked him to create a vase with an organic shape unlike one he’d ever produced before. When he presented the stellar collection of 30 pieces he said the commission was the most challenging project he’s worked on.
Vase by Nakagawa Mokkouegi