The Hearts and Techniques of Hida Master Craftsmen
One fine day in 1920 (the 9th year of the Taisho era), two travelers came to the town of Hida Takayama, a mountainous area near the Northern Japan Alps of Gifu, and passed down the technique of making Western bentwood furniture. This story touched the hearts of some people in the town of Takayama. They got together and decided to stake shares in launching a western furniture manufacturer by utilizing the traditional technique known as“Master Craftsmanship of Hida”. And as for resources, they used the virgin “Buna”(beech) forests, which grew thick and unused in the mountains. This was the birth of an epoch-making business venture. Those craftsmen had never seen, in real life, the thing called“chair”. But supported not only by their years of experience and knowledge of wood, but by their ingenuity and patience as well, they came to produce, after 2 years of near countless trial and error, not just a chair, but one using local traditional technique. With that success, they were able to confidently put “chair” into the world.
From that early beginning, the furniture of Hida Sangyo contributed to the modernism of Western culture, which in Japan was the beauty of the early Showa Era. The company continuously nurtured the culture of Japanese furniture and prudently placed export to the USA at the core of their production. After World War II, Hida Sangyo’s excellent design and quality gained popularity, and by manufacturing various long-selling products, the furniture of Hida Sangyo established a firm place in Japanese lifestyles. Carrying on the founding spirit of the company to this day, the new challenges and creativity of Hida Sangyo ―such as introducing under-used resources and the utilization of scrap wood for furniture production― have brought about the production of furniture which is deeply rooted in the climate and culture of Japan.