Japanese Matsumoto Stacking Tansu Chest

c. 1900
$6,580 USD
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W: 33.0" D: 15.5" H: 43.0"
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Designed to be versatile and portable, Japanese tansu chests were multipurpose storage cabinets that moved throughout the home as needed. Dated to the late 19th century, this Meiji-era example is a lacquered chest-on-chest clothing tansu (isho dansu), designed for storing clothing, bedding, and other household items. The tansu is comprised of two separate chests that can be stacked as a chest of drawers or displayed side-by-side as a low sideboard.

Crafted in a style specific to Matsumoto, the capital city of Nagano prefecture, this fantastic tansu features a lacquered cedar (sugi) casing and seven drawers fronted with paulownia (kiri). The light coloring and fine grain of paulownia provides the perfect contrast to the cabinet's highly worked iron hardware. Each drawer is secured with lock plates in the form of cinched money pouches, with simple key holes, chrysanthemum slide latches and broad iron staples, all characteristic features of Matsumoto cabinetry. The corners are reinforced with iron plates shaped as tea seed-pods and the drawer pulls have a traditional melon shape (mokko) and hang from escutcheons in the form of flower-diamonds (hana-bishi).

Drawer key included.

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