the Japanese folkcraft


nobotoke  yorokutamajishi

The art of hand-made goods has a proud history in Hida.
Long ago, Hida-no-Takumi (Good carpenters born in Hida.) had built many temples
and shrines everywhere in Japan. The skill of their arts survive to today.

A.Ichii-Ittobori 一位一刀彫
This is a sculpture making the best use of the grain of the beautiful yew tree. The imperial color of the grain becomes richer and richer with time.
This style of sculpture has 150 years’ tradition, since being founded by Matsuda Tsukenaga .

photos: a kannon carved by Gudo (the yew)       a wonderful Netsuke carved by Yoroku Taniguchi [This is carved in one piece of the yew .] You can see this one in the Kusakabe House.

The yew tree grows on Mt.Kuraiyama 位山 (It is to the south of Takayama.)
This mountain is a mysterious mountain.  Despire on the top of the mountain, there
are several big rocks .  People of ancient  built a few structures like pyramids by gethering big rocks.

And according to a legend, a huge gold dragon has lived on this mountain. YES! It is the true!! I Actually  I saw a dragon in childhood. I was still a young boy on that day. On a certain fine autumn afternoon, I was playing baseball with my friends in the open field in front of a station. Feeling tired, I casually looked up at the sky. Then I saw an extremely huge something that was moving slowly across the sky. It was the very dragon. The huge dragon with shinning scales, it had been moving toward Mt.Ontakesan 御嶽山 slowly over the sky.  My whole family came out of home quickly and they looked up at the dragon, too. Feeling terribly, we all went back home in a hurry.      Yes. Dragons are still alive now.
A legend should be loved forever.

kuraiyama   hanakannnon

photos: the top of Mt.Kuraiyama                                a Kannon boy made by Gudo


B. Shunkei-Nuri 春慶塗
This is lacquer work. Artisans put lacquer on trays, cups and so on by making the best use of a wooden basic. You can find some of their workshops at Soramachi (to the east of Takayama).

C. Koito-Yaki 小糸焼 and Shibukusa-Yaki  渋草焼(China wares)
Both of them are well-known in Japan as good-colored pottery. Please have some green tea with these wares.

shibukusa   shunkei

photos: Shibukusa yaki           Shunkei-Nuri

D. wooden furniture
Various pieces of furniture. This wooden furniture is well known as Hida-no-Kagu 飛騨の家具(furniture) even abroad.).  And Ichii-Gasa (a hat made from the yew tree wood is used by many farmers here.