George Nakashima

George Nakashima was born in June 1905 in Spokane, Washington where he also completed his studies in architecture. In 1931 he graduated with an MA in Architecture from MIT and went on a trip around the world. He lived n France, North Africa and Japan where he started work for an American architect, Antonin Raymond. In the meantime he travelled around Japan exploring the peculiarities of Japanese architecture and design.

In 1937 he took the role of the primary construction consultant commissioned to build a dormitory in India. During the Second World War he was interned and sent to Camp Minidoka in Idaho, where he mastered to a very high level traditional Japanese hand tools and woodworking. After his release from the camp, Nakashima’s style flourished and focused exclusively on the expressiveness of wood. He chose boards with knots and figured grain. He is considered the father of the American craft movement and a significant innovator when it comes to 20th century furniture design. In 1983 he was presented with the Order of the Sacred treasure, an honour given by the Emperor of Japan and the Japanese government. One of his workshops in Japan has become a gallery and a museum and currently his furniture is hitting sales records being deemed to have become “ultracollecatble”.