Artisan | Woodworker: Sato, Tatsuo | 1928-2009
Born in Yajirou, Shiroishi, Miyagi Prefecture, Tatsuo studied under Master Sato Imasaburo, producing traditional Yajirou Kokeshi. While he remained a traditional Yajirou Artist, he also created some rare Sosaku Kokeshi, for he was an accomplished oil painter. Tatsuo’s love of Mt. Tanigawa, a popular tourist attraction near his home, is wonderfully illustrated in his depiction of the canyon and waterfall in winter on these creative Kokeshi, with all the inherent natural elements. Arranged in a comprehensive composition, the calligraphy on the body of his Kokeshi are typically short poems, (Haiku), which embody the spirit of Mt. Tanigawa. The poem here translates as: “The Earth trembles at Ichi-no-Kurasawa at Mt. Tanigawa”.
Collector's note – descriptive qualities, standard characteristics & ornamentation styles:
The subject of Sato-san’s extremely detailed dolls forces the eyes to concentrate on the hand-painted landscape, and associated poems about this wonderful visual experience. Although his work falls into the creative Kokeshi category, each of his dolls have traditional elements in both the facial characteristics and the colored grooving of the line work framing the image. The town leaders, where the artist resides, uses his pieces as souvenirs, (omiyage), to visiting dignitaries.