|Barber's Equipment Box (dabako)
Approx. 1 800, Matsumoto, Nagano Prefecture H.4 1/2,W.7 1/2,D.4 in. (11, 19, 10 cm)
Maple, copper fittings,fuki-urushi(wiped) lacquerKawai Kanjiro's House
This is a barber's equipment box dating to the Edo period (1603-1867). These were called dabako in the Kansairegion in the west and bindarai in the eastern Kanto region.
The example shown here is from the KanSai region, and itis easy to differentiate between the two types.
Those from the Kanto region have a funnel-shaped comb holder fitted on the top,
Barbers would use them to carry their combs,scissors, razors, and other equipment when they would visitclients at their 1homes. The 1110Iley for purchasing these boxeswas sometimes do11ated by customers a11d the more rich clientthe barber had, the more elegant and gorgeous boxes they wereable to possess. T11is example uses maple finishedin fuki-urushi (wiped lacquer), and the inside of the lid is lacqueredin red while the inside of the drawers is black. Theiron Straps reinforcing the box take the shape of bamboo,creating a most interesting design.
|Informal ornamental shaves(kazari-dana)
H.24,W.30,D.14 in.(61,77,37 cm.)
|Informal ornamental shaves(kazaridana)
|Room Cabinet (heya-dansu)
Approx. 1900, Izumo, Shimane Prefecture
H. 66,W.73,D. 27V2in. (168, 185,70cm)
Zelkova, patinated iron fittings,fuki-urushi (wiped) lacquerIzumo Folk Crafts Museum
This tansu would have stood in the sitting room, where it would store valuables, documents, and various miscellaneous items. It belonged in the home of a large landowner in the Izumo region. Being very large in size, it is of chest-on-chest design in order to make it easier to move. The top section contains two shelves, while the drawers in the lower section are fitted with locks in order to store valuables. This cabinet is of a practical, plain design, but the zelkova wood used in the sliding doors of the top section is very beautiful. In addition to zelkova, it also uses cryptomeria for the sides.The front of the case, the frames of the doors, and the shelves have been finished in black lacquer.
Room Cabinet (cha-dansu)
Kuwana, Mie Prefecture H. 68 1/2,W. 67,D. 24 in. (174, 170,60 cm) Zelkova and
cherry, copper fittings, kijiro-nuri 1acquer Private collection
|Ledger Chest (cho-dansu)
Approx. 1 900, Aizu, Fukushima PrefectureH. 361/2,W. 331/2,D. 17in. (93, 85,43 cm)Zelkova, patinated iron fittings ,fuki-urushj (wiped) lacquerPrivate collectionThis is a very ordinary ledger chest from the Aizu region. Aizuwakamatsu was a castletown, so the designs of the tansu produced there tend to reflect the conservative, reserved tastes of the inhabitants. The drawers have been positioned in a well-balanced layout, while the floral-shaped metal fittings attached to the cornersof the drawers are the same as those seen on old tansu from Sado. The same style was also prop duceduced in Akita, Sakata, Yonezawa, and Nagaoka,all of which had sea routes to Sado. This design doubtless originated there.
Eary eighteenth century
Approx. 1800, Matsumoto, Nagano PrefectureH.4 l/2,W.7 I/2,D.4in. (11, l9.
10 cm)Cryptomeria, patinated iron fittings,fuki-urushi (wiped) lacquerJapan Folk Crafts
Staircase Chest (kaidan-dansu)
Late nineteenth century, Matsumoto, Nagano
This is a seven-step kaidan-dansu (staircase chest), consisting of a square tansu with one three-step cabinet placed in front and one top. All the various shapes presented by this form have been cleverly utilized for storage. The horizontal slats on the doors, the rectangular shape of the drawers, and the curves of the drawer pulls combine to create a beautifully balanced form, design-wise. In particular, the vertical column of three small drawers is most interesting. The lockplates are of the kinchaku (purse) shape and the escutcheons of the drawer pulls are of eyo-kurigata (curved abstracts) openwork, characteristic of furniture produced in the Matsumoto area of Nagano Prefecture. Overall, its solid construction is typical of the work produced there.
Approx. 1880 H. 14,W. 11,D.
15 1/2in.(35,2B,39cm) Magnolia, brass
fittings, shunkei-nuri 1acquer Private collection
Approx. 1800,H.8,W. 8,D. 14 1/2in. (20,21, 37cm)Zelkova,patinated iron fittings,fuki-urushi
(wiped) lacquerEhime Folk Crafts Museum
Tea Chest (cha-dansu)
Late nineteenth century
H.12,D iam.20 in.(30,51 cm.)Pauloenia
|Sea Chest (funa-dansu)
portable ledger box/strongbox (chobako)
Hikidashi//hirakido-gata (drawer/hinged double-door style)
Late nineteenth century, Sado, Niigata Prefecture
Zelkova, Patinated iron fittings, fuki-urushi (wiped) lacquerPrivate collection
Produced in Ogi, Sado Island, this funa-dansu features beautiful figuredwood and elegantly designed eyo-kurigata (curved abstracts) openworkmetal fittings with double straps that continue around the sides. The uppersection contains a single drawer and, although the lower section has theappearance of having hinged double-doors, the left door is actually a zuri-do(one that slides to one side to be lifted out). The interior of the right dooris divided into two sections, top and bottom, each containing a endon-buta(drop-fit) door. The interior of the upper kendon-buta is divided into left andright, the right side holding a writing box with a secret box behind it, andthe left side containing a drawer. The lower kendon-buta contains a moneybox. The area behind the zuri-do is divided into two sections, the upper containing drawers, and the lower a kendon-buta that opens to reveal a box with asliding lid that opens to reveal a paulownia box with a sliding lid on its upperfare This chest was produced when funa-dansu were at their peak.
|Clothing Chest (isho-dansu)
1890s, Tsuruoka,Yamagata Prefecture
H.48,W. 34V2.D. 18in. (122, 88,45 cm)
Paulownia, patinated iron fittings, black lacquer
This is a black-lacquered dowry tansu produced in Tsuruoka. The hingeddouble-doors in the top half open to reveal two drawers that were usedto store quality clothing. The drawers in the lower section were used foreveryday clothing or underwear, and the small, hinged door at the bottomright was for storing valuables. The design of this tansu, with auspicious symbols scattered over a black base, is similar to that of a wedding kimono. Thistype of old-fashioned elegance appealed to the conservative inhabitants ofhe castle town of Tsuruoka.
|Ledger Chest (cho-dansu)
Late nineteenth century, Izumo, Shimane Prefecture
This ledger chest was used in the home of a rich landowner in the Izumo region. The exterior is of zelkova, but the interior is of paulownia. As is typical of Izumo tansu, the metalwork is not massive in appearance. Small kinchaku (purse)-shaped or ircular lock plates soften the overall appearance, while its red tone gives it a warm feel. In this chest, the metalwork is all iron, which-after an application of burnt lacquer finish-has then been given acoat of red lacquer. The lock bar has a family crest in the center (floral diamondwithin fern circle). This is an unusually flamboyant design for a ledger chest.