Hajime Takahashi (1918-2002) was a celebrated artist in the world of Kokeshi, known for his innovative and expressive designs. Born in Miyagi Prefecture, Takahashi-san began his journey in the Kokeshi craft under the guidance of his father, Kichitaro Takahashi, and later, studied under the legendary Sato, Mannojo. His creations, often characterized by their expressive facial features and detailed designs, have garnered him numerous awards, including the coveted Prime Minister’s Award in 1965. His work is a reflection of his belief that Kokeshi should not merely be objects of beauty but should also bring joy and smiles to those who behold them.
Description of the Kokeshi
The "Snow Child" Kokeshi presents two distinctive qualities that draw the observer into its delightful depiction of a child prepared for the winter snow. Firstly, its head, a separate element atop the doll form, showcases extremely expressive eyes, a dot nose, and an abstract swirl of hair, with a suggestion of hair fringes (not ears) framing both sides of the face. Secondly, the beautifully detailed vermillion scarf, gracefully encircling its neck and cascading down the front of its body, offers a vibrant contrast to the natural wood. Takahashi-san employed a painterly approach to illustrate the clothing elements, leaving the base of the head and body natural and finished with uncolored candle wax (Rōsoku no rō). The piece is authenticated with Takahashi’s signature and stamp on the bottom.
Height: approximately 15.5cm
This Kokeshi is not only a collector's delight but also serves as a splendid interior decoration, seamlessly blending traditional Japanese artistry with contemporary spaces. It stands as a thoughtful gift for enthusiasts of Japanese culture, offering a tangible connection to the rich and expressive world of Kokeshi crafting, and a window into the artistic spirit of Hajime Takahashi.