MOV File
Online Collections

Chōjū Kōami

Japanese, 1599-1651

Occupation or Type

lacquer artist


Kōami Chōjū was the tenth-generation head of a family of lacquer artists who specialized in maki-e, a technique in which gold or silver powder is sprinkled on a wet lacquer surface to create a design or a mottled background. The Kōami had been purveyors to emperors for centuries; during Chōjū’s career they won the patronage of newly powerful samurai clans as well, especially for bridal trousseau furnishings. Chōjū and his studio crafted goods for other state occasions as well, such as imperial investiture ceremonies or gift exchanges between the shogun and provincial governors.



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