This is the only remaining building painted with iron oxide in the Higashiyama district. Iron oxide is a substance found in soil, which has deep roots in the Japanese lifestyle; it protects against insects and rot.
A technique called kimusuko was used for the outer latticework. Fine latticework requires the use of thin wood to make trapezoidal shapes, according to a technique that makes it difficult to see inside from the outside, but easy to see outside from the inside.
The long, thin lumber was hammered onto the building lengthwise as molding for the siding that was layered in the hagasane style, when the panels of the outer walls were put up. On the reverse side, cuts were made to fit with the siding, so that it adheres tightly to the wall.
The earthen floor at the entrance to our building consists of tataki. Tataki is short for tatakitsuchi, which is made by blending hydrated lime and bittern into a mixture of red soil and gravel, and then letting the resulting substance harden.
Inside the plaster-coated double door of the storehouse there are triple lattice doors and shoji doors. To maintain the style of an old house, we made the storehouse into a gallery. We kept the original form of the lattice doors and used a modern material rather than traditional paper to cover them. Here you will find one-of-a-kind lacquer accessories and beautiful decorative items made by artists that were carefully selected by the gallery owner. There is a wide choice of exquisite gifts for women who love beautiful things.
The Urushi-lacquer room, where the fine kimusuko latticework stands out beautifully, features the handiwork of skilled artisans who are the pride of Ishikawa Prefecture. When you open the sliding door, a black lacquer stage backed by a gold-leaf folding screen will appear before your eyes. There is a permanent display of traditional Wajima lacquerware, as well as Kanazawa lacquerware, which creates an atmosphere of calmness and opulence. Enjoy the beauty of Kanazawa’s four seasons through the lovely works exhibited here.
This room is an “art gallery without glass cases”, that allows visitors to get a close-up view of the works of traditional artisans. It is a beautiful space replete with the skill and spirit of master craftsmen. The pattern on the walls of honjuraku (high-quality clay taken from Jurakudai, Kyoto) was created by coating them with a lot of moisture, and then drying them quickly, so that fine cracks would form.
Through the window, visitors can enjoy the showy pink leaves of a Japanese maple in the miniature garden that is typical of a tradesman’s house.
In the middle of the second floor incongruously hangs a tempered glass suspension bridge. This gorgeous bridge coated with gold leaf is sure to give you a feeling of excitement.
The room at the back of a teahouse, facing onto the back garden, was said to be more prestigious than the room facing onto the street. The walls of this room have been recreated to resemble the painted red walls of several generations ago. In this room, which has an antechamber, are displayed outstanding Kanazawa gold-leaf crafts made using techniques that were developed over many years at Hakuichi. A gorgeous gold-leaf folding screen complements the room, making Kanazawa gold-leaf crafts all the more appealing.