Light and Shadow is the newest sculptural, hand fabricated box by master studio furniture and urushi artist Yoko Zeltersman Miyaji. Twelve months in the making, Light and Shadow was first hand fabricated from the finest Mahogany before Zeltserman-Miyaji began the process of applying the urushi, or Japanese lacquer. Each color of urushi is painstakingly mixed by hand for two to three hours before Zeltserman-Miyaji begins the application. Each layer may take weeks to dry and then can be polished by hand to reveal the exquisite patterns present in the work. The importance of keeping the tradition of urushi furniture alive inspires Zeltserman-Miyaji to use everyday materials such as beans, macaroni, rice or soles of slippers to create richly embellished and exquisitely lacquered surfaces.
Light and Shadow is both a beautiful sculpture and also a functional box of drawers which can easily be used and enjoyed for lifetimes, destined to become a cherished heirloom. Two doors open to reveal several drawers with hand fabricated mahogany pulls. Each drawer is itself a work of art, with unique urushi finishes inside and out.
The first female Japanese artist to make furniture reflecting the 1970s American studio furniture movement, Yoko Zeltserman-Miyagi is known as a pioneer of contemporary furniture in her native country of Japan. Midori Oka, former curator of the Peabody Essex Museum writes, “Miyaji’s furniture epitomizes the genius of Japanese furniture design, where form and function come together.”
Mahogany, black urushi, clear urushi, pigments, kawari nuri polishing technique
17.5″ x 11″ x 9.5″