Art & Design

Talk: The Wonders of Urushi

23 November 2018, London

Urushi, the precious sap of the urushi tree which is indigenous to south-east Asia and from which all authentic lacquerware is made, has been used in Japan since ancient times. Its unique properties were discovered more than 9,200 years ago by the Jomon people who used it not only as an adhesive and for waterproofing, but also as a decorative material for their costumes and utensils. Since that time, urushi has always been a practical necessity for Japanese society but with the advances of technology in modern society, urushi has been outstripped of its usefulness.


In this talk, Suzanne Ross will discuss the roots of Japanese urushi culture. She will explain how this exotic material is extracted, the processes involved in producing lacquerware and about the grave dangers that face urushi and all traditional arts. The enduring beauty and elegance of urushi will always be strongly attached to the Japanese identity and their heritage belongs not only to the Japanese people but to mankind; such a cultural asset needs to be preserved and cultivated for future generations.


Booking is required:

23 November 2018

Daiwa Foundation Japan House, 13/14 Cornwall Terrace, London NW1 4QP UK

Tel: 020 7486 4348 Fax: 020 7486 2914

Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation