Official lacquer artists to the shogunate (goyō makie-shi)
At the beginning of the Edo period (1615-1868), Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu established Japan's new government center in Edo (Tokyo). This new metropolis soon became a magnet for lacquer artisans, who began flocking there in search of opportunities to ply their trade. The best among them were selected for employment, many in Edo Castle, making furnishings and other items. The Tokugawa clan, and many other daimyo families, began ordering makie lacquerware, often luxury items that symbolized their power and wealth. One notable example is the set of “Hatsune Furnishings” created in 1639 for the wedding of Chiyohime, a daughter of third Tokugawa shogun Iemitsu (1604–1651). This assemblage is now now a National Treasure in the collection of the Tokugawa Art Museum.