In search of the best materials, even to a rainforest
Mats made from woven rattan pair beauty to function. The surface of rattan has a ‘glass texture’ that imparts a sense of clean beauty. It is refreshingly cool against bare feet. Kiuchi Touzai Kogyo began in the business of rattan mats in 1931. For close to ninety years, they have worked with rattan in mats, and in furniture. While the resulting products have their characteristic in light and durable beauty, the customers include prestigious golf courses and old Japanese inns. The reason the work is appreciated by professionals is not just the exacting craftsmanship. The materials for the products are sourced by the craftspeople themselves. In the dense rainforests of Borneo where orang-utan live, rattan grows wild. The climbing plant is covered with countless thorns, and has a deep sense of rough nature. The expert eye that finds this rattan climbing on the thick trunks of rubber trees belongs to Hideki Kiuchi, the third generation head of the firm. In place of the second generation head, his father, Tomohide, he travels on his own to the production region three times a year. Having mastered Indonesian language Hideki conducts negotiations for the best materials without the aid of a translator. His present passion is not just for the rattan mats and furniture so respected by professionals, but to find new potential in the material and to develop products that will broaden the awareness of its beauty and utility.
Kiuchi Touzai Kogyo
4-40-24 Sengoku, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 112-0011