Kokeshi has a tradition to be believed as nurtured by harsh winters, blessed by the hot springs, and beloved by the uncompromising craftsman's spirit.
Kokeshi is a type of handcrafted, traditional wooden doll, which is thought to have originated as a children's toy during the mid-19th century in the hot-springs communities, who were living deep in the mountains of today's Miyagi Prefecture. In the mid-20th century, people have rediscovered kokeshi, and the emergence of collectors transformed it from an everyday toy to a coveted treasure for all generations. With their stark simplicity and gentle expressions, kokeshis have long been used as beloved gifts suitable to a variety of occasions, such as birthdays, house warmings, weddings, and births, and as unique design objects to illuminate contemporary homes.
Made by modern kokeshi artist Akihiro Sakurai. Born in 1951 in Naruko, Akihiro is the 5th-generation Kokeshi craftsperson of the Sakurai family. Inheriting the spirit of his father and master Shoji, he does not restrain himself with only traditional types. Three-time winner of the Best Kokeshi Award with his traditional Kokeshi, he never ceases to question himself about what Kokeshi can be, actively exploring new possibilities.
Material: Mizuki (dogwood) wood
Made in Naruko, Miyagi.