In the book Suiseki – II, An Art Created by Nature – The Sen-En-Kyo Collection of Japanese Viewing Stones, we were introduced to small bronze works of art produced by Eisho Wakahara.
These are beautifully made and can accompany bonsai or suiseki. All of the images today are the copyright of Sen-En-Kyo, 2007 with the photographer being Shigenori Ishihara.
“These bronzes were made using the Lost-Wax Metal-Casting Method. According to Mr. Wakahara Eiichi, son of Waikahara Eisho, Eisho was born in a family of producer and wholesalers of copperware, and he learned the lost-wax casting method from craftsmen from a young age. In his early days, he made additional ornaments for miniature landscape gardens, but then when Professor Hayashi Baiho, teacher of bonseki in the Hosokawa style, recognized them being displayed in his shop, he started to produce ornaments for bonseki.”
“The fact that Eisho, considered as a great master of additional ornament art, first made accessories for miniature landscape gardens and bonseki is noteworthy. It verifies why some of the accessories are in the shape of standing trees. He probably made additional ornaments for bonsai and suiseki folliwng the path of the production of accessories for bonseki.”
“Eisho’s art was made incorporating a method in which the whole molding is produced in one piece, rather than in separate pieces which require to be waxed together.”
“He developed this method by studying the techniques of a craftsman called Wado who was know for making small crab ornaments.”
“Wado also produced suiteki (water droppers) by metal-casting. Like the thin legs of the crab ornament, the fine branches of the plum tree and small branches growing from a cut trunk were created together with the main part.”
“Eisho profoundly studied the works by Wado and achieved the techniques to produce the additional ornaments, such as the deer with the fine antlers and legs and the elaborately made fisherman.
The shop “Kanbeya” near Ikenohata which was one of the shops that Eisho sold his works to, was where Harada Houn worked under before he became famous.”
Additional Eisho Works
This is one of our favorites. Simplistic in form but quite beautiful. We continue to look to acquire one of these – so far no luck.