The 60th Anniversary of the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations between Myanmar and Japan

Japan-Myanmar Lacquer Craft Exchange Research Program, 2014

2014 is the 60th Anniversary of the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations between Myanmar and Japan. The Japanese Foreign Ministry and the Japanese Embassy in Myanmar has recognized our program and authorized the "Japan-Myanmar Lacquer Craft Exchange Research Program" to be an official part of the celebrations.
We held an exhibition of international and Myanmar lacquer art at the Lacquerware Technology College in Bagan from 10-13 September concurrent with its yearly workshop and lecture program. Over 40 artworks were exhibited.
Date:10 - 13 September 2014
Place:Auditorium and Exhibition Space Lacquerware Technology College (Old Bagan)
Content :1-Lectures, 2-Workshop, 3-Exhibition
Sponsors:Toshiba International Foundation, The Satoh Artcraft Research & Scholarship Foundation
Support :Embassy of Japan, Myanmar, Small-Scale Industries Department, Ministry of Cooperatives
Organizers:Lacquerware Technology College, Asian Lacquer Craft Exchange Research Project.

 1-Lectures and Demonstrations

11 September
Opening remarks
- U Mya Than, Small Scale Industry Department, Ministry of Cooperatives
- Mr. Yusuke Matsuoka, 広報文化班, Embassy of Japan, Myanmar
- Outline of Workshops and Lectures, 2014. Review of 2013 (Matsushima Sakurako)
Lacquer Hospitality Design (Onobori Seiichi)
The technologies that produce lacquer crafts and ware emerged slowly over millennia and are, thus, wedded to and rooted in the spiritual traditions and heritage of society. Scrupulous attention to material and method is what creates the shining awe-inspiring beauty of lacquerware. In a sense, lacquer is a nurturing, mystical craft.
In contrast, modern industrial machine-driven technologies favor problem solving and economic efficiency. Design applied in the modern era has focused on production activities. Design is a series of acts that bit by bit slightly improves the status quo -- purposeful, planned creation.
In addition to the modern aspect, I will discuss design as meticulous preparation and focus by the artist with the goal of eliciting a sense of satisfaction and joy in the user -- the fusion of design and planning, creation and craft. Design as hospitality. I would like to consider and envisage lacquer design as hospitaliy, a culture of technology in the field of life.
Myanmar Lacquer Art and Technique
Incised lacquer Technique (U Htay Aung, Lecturer,Lacquerware Technology College and U Tin Htay Technician)
Myanmar Lacquerware technology emerged in the 12th century, the Bagan Era. Incised lacquer techniques were developed in the 17th century, the Nyaung Yan Era. Besides this technique, other commonly used ones are gilding and embossing. In the incised technique, a surface is engraved using the sharp point of a thin metal tool and the incision pigmented. This technique uses red, green, and yellow base pigments.
Japanese Lacquer~Shape and Color of Kanshitsu~ Bokashi Coating Technique (Masumura Kiichiro)
Lacquer techniques were introduced to Japan along with Buddhism from China about 1200 year ago.
Kanshitsu, dry lacquer technique, was used to make Buddha statues because of its ability to be shaped into any form, its lightness, and its durability. These qualities also made the technique suitable for making lacquerware. Tokyo National University of Fine Arts, established in 1890, encouraged graduates to promote local lacquer crafts for export. In 1930 lacquerware was displayed at an art exhibition organized by the Ministry of Education and thereby elevated to an art form. In 1955, a law to protect intangible cultural heritage was enacted to safeguard and preserve Japanese traditional culture that was devastated by World War II. As a result, the appellation, holder of “Important Intangible Cultural Property”, was designated. The holders are committed to further the development of lacquer techniques including kanshitsu.
12 September
Current States of Lacquer in Cambodia (Eric Stocker)
Eric Stocker started his training in the crafts of lacquer and gilding techniques in France at age 16 with Maître Pierre Bobot. He has since then worked on the restoration of ancient lacquerware from Asia and Europe. Since the late 1990s, Eric has been working extensively in Southeast Asia, and primarily in Cambodia where his vision is to revive and preserve the lacquer traditions which war and turmoil have almost wiped-out from Khmer Culture.
Lacquerware in Kyoto (Kurimoto Natsuki, Inoue Emiko)
In introducing Kyoto lacquer, I will begin with an overview of the curriculum for Lacquerware Majors at Kyoto City University of Arts, a public school, while showing photos of lacquer artwork by students, alumni, and teachers. The Lacquer Art Department at the university has a 119-year history dating from the founding of the Lacquer Department at Kyoto City School of Arts and Crafts in 1895. The department’s goal is to foster creative expression while producing consistently high quality lacquer art and ware. Graduates have been active as artists, designers, and teachers in wood and lacquer craft as well as in curatorship. (Natsuki Kurimoto)
Kyoto lacquerware called Kyo-coated or Kyo-makie, was developed reflecting the climate and trends of each era. For example, “Higashiyama jidaimono” (period piece) is associated with the tea ceremony, and “Kodai-ji makie” is splendid, majestic maki-e representing the tastes of the samurai soldier, Masters such as Honami Koetsu and Ogata Korin passed down to the modern era techniques and innovative expression, call “Rimpa”, which has implications for other artistic fields besides lacquer crafts. In this talk, lacquer work by teachers who are active in Kyoto will be discussed. Works that carefully follow traditional techniques are delicately finished, and aesthetically sophisticated. (Emiko Inoue)
Japanese Bamboo Weaving and Ka-nyit Technique (Takahashi Kayo)
The traditional Myanmar lacquer techniques of "rantai” (bamboo weaving) and "kinma” (scratching and coloring) are also traditional techniques in Kagawa Prefecture. This is a slide presentation of these techniques. Hitoshi Ota, designated a “Living National Heritage” lives in Kagawa, is an expert in the “rantai” technique. There are a number of well-known artists that use “kinma” technique in their expressive artwork.
Lacquer Exhibition and Activity in Japanese Museums (Terao Aiko, Akima Takayo)
“The Satoh Arts and Crafts Research & Scholarship Foundation” was established to promote international understanding through the arts and crafts. Lacquer projects are usually exhibitions at the Sekido museum and grant activities. In 2013, we held exhibitions of “Urushie and Negoro” from the museum collection and “Bhutanese Lacquerware”. (Takayo Akima)
The Wajima Museum of Urushi Art in Ishikawa Prefecture was established in 1991 in Wajima a leading lacquerware production center as one of the few museums that of specializes in lacquer. We gather information about lacquer from Japan and abroad and provide exhibition space where lacquerware can be appreciated. I will report on some of our exhibition and promotion activities as well as give details of our programs with local communities. (Aiko Terao)
Myanmar Lacquer Art and Technique, Horsehair lacquerware (Moe Moe Lacquer Workshop)
Horsehair has been used in making lacquerware for about 80 years. It is derived from bamboo weaving. In this technique, bamboo strips are the weft while the horsehairs are the warp. Small items such as cups, cigarette, and betel boxes are made using horsehair.


Workshop on Japanese Pigment and Myanmar Lacquer Work
This workshop uses Myanmar lacquer in combination with safe Japanese developed pigments which are nontoxic to the human body. The pigments were developed by Nikka Kasei Co. Ltd. and donated by Mr. Yamamoto Osamu the company representative. The faculty at the Bagan Lacquerware Technology College have experimented with mixing different kinds and amounts of lacquer with Japanese pigments and examined the results. Participants will mix Myanmar lacquer with the Japanese pigments to create a design on a lacquered plate guided by teachers from the College.
Using the pigmented lacquer participants formulated earlier, designs will be transferred to the lacquer plates, so that the participants can freely express themselves and explore the possibilities of these new, nontoxic pigments. Participants will receive a complimentary sample of Nikka Kasei pigments.


“Japan-Myanmar Lacquer Art Exhibition” Commemorating 60 Years Friendship and 10 Years Exchange Program
Date:10 - 13 September 2014, 9:00~16:00
Place:Auditorium and Exhibition Space Lacquerware Technology College
Reception and Artist Talk:11 September, 14:00~
About 40 lacquer art works from Japan, Myanmar and other Asian countries were exhibited.
Question and answer session about lacquer art technology and any other topics of interest



opening remarks
Lacquer Hospitality Design, Prof.Onobori
Incised lacquer technique, U Htay Aung
demonstration, Bokashi Coating Technique, Prof.Masumura
bokashi coating technique, using Myanmar lacquer
molding for kanshitsu technique
demonstration, horsehair work (Moe Moe Lacquer Workshop)
artisttalk - Exhibition
artisttalk - Exhibition

Lecture on Japanese pigment

using Japanese pigment and Myanmar lacquer

using Japanese pigment and Myanmar lacquer

using Japanese pigment and Myanmar lacquer

drawing with colored lacquer

Lectures and Demonstrations | Workshops | English Page