"We never compromise on the quality of our work and we are proud of the quality of our materials, the precision of our wooden base work, and the clear look of our wiped lacquer finishes."

Meet The Makers

Gato Mikio - Japan

Founded in 1908 in Yamanaka Hot Spring, a town long known for its wood turning, Gato Mikio keeps a tradition alive which has thrived in this region of Japan for over 400 years. In identifying the most direct sources of inspiration, Gato Miko pays homage to the groundwork laid by Yuzo Aizuya, a maki-e lacquer decorator of the mid-1800s, Hebei Minoya, a master of the wood turning technique Itomebiki from the same time period, and Ryotara Tsukiji, a modern master of wood turning.

Today, Gato Mikio's stunning Yamanaka Lacquerware is crafted in the Yamanaka Onsen area of Kaga City, Ishikawa Prefecture. Working with designers including Masaharu Asano of the Tohka collection, Atsushi Sakai of the Yurari collection, Ikumi Ishizaki of the Tsumugi collection, and Kenichiro Oomori of the Sinafu collection, all of whom are represented in our curated collection, Gato Mikio creates sake and wine cups, soup bowls, serving trays, and other vessels of extraordinary form. Collaborating with the talented and storied woodturners of the region to bring the designs to life, the goal of Gato Mikio's wares is simple: to allow the beautiful grain of the natural ingredients to shine in functional objects of impeccable quality and finish made using both modern and traditional woodworking techniques. The results speak for themselves. 

From the precision and functionality achieved for the fit of lidded bowls and containers, to the use of usubiki, a skill to turn wood so thin one can see light through it, to sensuji, a decorative wood turning technique, care for the material, and an emphasis on simple, pure, and universally beautiful shapes results in a collection unlike any other. A woodworking approach prized by Gato Mikio, a cornerstone of their offerings, is the use of tatekidori, a method which employs wood cut across the longitudinal grain, rather than along it, as is most often seen. This enables the woodturner to achieve a level of precision not otherwise attainable, while producing a long-lasting, functional tool resistant to distortion and one which allows the wood's natural grain to be enjoyed to its fullest. Finally, hand-sanding and the meticulous application of transparent lacquer result in objects of breathtaking allure. 

Gato Mikio is proud of the quality of their materials, the precision of their woodturning, and the striking look of their wiped lacquer finish, and we are proud to bring that level of craft to you.