His grandfather was a Maki-e craftsman (a Japanese lacquer technique that uses metal powders, such as gold and silver) while his father mastered Urushi. Now, Isshu Tamura himself is one of Japan’s renowned Urushi lacquer artists. Because it is so difficult and time consuming, using Urushi on watch faces is rare. The process involves several undercoats, an intermediate coat, a top coat and finally a finishing coat to eliminate any minute scratches or pinholes. Before each application, Suruga charcoal is used to roughen the surface, which ensures proper adherence. For Tamura-san, who is excited by challenging projects, the results are worth the effort. “I think the combination of traditional Japanese Urushi lacquer and wristwatches has a great synchronicity,” he says. “It reflects the made in Japan spirit.”
The mesmerizing black face of The Seiko Presage Urushi Collection is offset with white numerals and gold hands. The contrast is both balanced and breathtaking. The watch is completed with a sophisticated black wristband featuring elegant gold stitching. And because every dial is lacquered by hand, each is created with its own unique character.
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