Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Hiroshi (II)

Some months ago I presented a couple of pens decorated with urushi lacquer. Those were Pilot Custom 67 decorated by maki-e artist Hiroshi (洋). At the time I did not know the actual origin of those customizations and I ventured the idea of proofs of concept. But now the facts are clearer and the whole story can be written correctly.


A couple of Pilot pens customized by Hiroshi (洋).

Asakura Yukihiro (朝倉行洋) is a maki-e craftsman from the province of Kanagawa. He worked for Pilot between 1960 and 2001, when he retired. His signature, as we have already seen, is 洋, which can be read either as Hiroshi or as Yô. Here I am showing a creation of his—a rendition of the classic motif of the goldfish. This pen was made in 1978.


A creation of Hiroshi (洋) in 1978.


Asakura’s signature appears together with the inscription “kokkôkai” (國光會), the guild of maki-e artisans working for Pilot.


Asakura's signature (Hiroshi or Yô, 洋) together with the "kokkôkai" (國光會) inscription. In red, the kaô (花押).


The nib of the pen: "18 K - 750 / PILOT / / H878 / JIS mark". The nib was made at the Hiratsuka factory in August of 1978.

The pen uses a cartridge-converter system and implements an 18 K gold nib. Its dimensions are as follows:

Length closed: 132 mm
Length open: 122 mm
Length posted: 147 mm
Diameter: 10 mm
Weight: 28.1 g
Ink deposit: 0.9 ml (cartridge) / 0.8 (converter CON-20) / 0.4 ml (converter CON-40) / 0.6 ml (converter CON-50)

But retired did not mean to stay idle, and Asakura takes commissions to decorate, at least, pens. These creations are, as before, signed as Hiroshi or Yô, 洋, but without the “kokkôkai” sign, as he is no longer part of the Pilot team of artisans.


Another pen customized by Hiroshi.

And this is the case of some pens shown on these Chronicles—commissions taken by Asakura Yukihiro performed on the well known Pilot Custom 67.


These two pens are already known to the readers of this blog.

My thanks to Mr. Fukuyo, Mr. Niikura, Mr. Sunami, and Mr. Shige.


Lamy Safari Aquamarine – Yard-O-Led Blue

Bruno Taut
Nakano, June 13th, 2016
etiquetas: Pilot, maki-e

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