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Tsutsumi Asakichi Urushi Store Opens New Hub “Und.” Connecting People and Crafts

The Tsutsumi Asakichi Urushi Store, founded in Kyoto in 1909, procures, refines, blends, and colors lacquer sap. As well as handling the sales of lacquer art materials and tools. The store has developed its own lacquer with superior weather resistance, which has been employed for the restoration of National Treasures and Important Cultural Properties such as the Nikko Toshogu Shrine and Himeji Castle, as well as for the repair of World Heritage buildings and the Kyoto State Guest House furnishings. Currently, Tsutsumi Asakichi Urushi Store supplies over 70% of the overall supply of Japanese lacquer in the domestic market.

The store actively engages in various projects and initiatives to connect lacquer culture to the future, promoting the allure and possibilities of lacquer through projects such as “Urushi no Ippo” (One Step for Urushi). The project “BEYOND TRADITION,” aims to convey new values and possibilities of lacquer use through sports such as surfing, skateboarding, and BMX. The “Kogei no Mori” (Craft Forest) project aims to advance planting and circular manufacturing.

This spring, as a new activity hub, the flagship store “Und.” will open on April 20, 2024, renovating an office and warehouse adjacent to the lacquer refining factory. The first floor is a specialized lacquer art store with all necessary materials and tools available. It also offers kintsugi (gold joinery), fuki-urushi (wiping lacquer), and lacquer painting experience kits, related books, with a permanent English-speaking staff. A finishing-workshop for the wooden lacquered surfboard and skateboard brand “siita-” is also included, where visitors can see products in progress and place custom orders. The shop features a lacquer refining laboratory which has been used since the company’s founding, with tours and visits available. The third floor introduces a new lacquer painting workshop equipped with a custom lacquer drying chamber for hardening lacquer through temperature and humidity control, enabling in-house lacquer painting processing. The shop plans to serve as a shared studio for aspiring lacquer artists and a production site for domestic and international artists. The spacious free-space and open kitchen are designed to hold various workshops and events.

The opening exhibition will host photographer Shumpei Ohsugi for the “SHUMPEI OHSUGI Photo Exhibition” from April 20 to May 12, 2024. As a new hub connecting people and crafts and to reflect on coexistence with nature, the activities here will be worth our attention.


◾️Related information

Address: 540 Inari-cho, Matsubara Noboru, Ainomachi-dori, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto
Opening hours: 11:00 am to 6:00 pm
Closed: Sunday and Monday
*Opening on April 20, 2024

Opening Exhibition “SHUMPEI OHSUGI Photo Exhibition”
Period: April 20 to May 12, 2024
Opening hours: 11:00 am to 6:00 pm
Closed: Sunday and Monday



Editorial Team

KOGEI STANDARD is a cultural online media introducing Japanese crafts to the world which include ceramics, lacquerware, textiles, woodworking, glass and many more.