Traditional crystal glass
Kagami Crystal was founded in 1934 as the first factory in Japan to specialize in crystal glass. The founder is the engineer Kozo Kagami who learned crystal glass techniques in Germany before WW2. He utilized his techniques in highly transparent glass and applied it to the domain of art. He went on to create various works with artistic design and patterns, and won many awards overseas and domestically. His efforts were rewarded by the status as the Purveyor to the Imperial Household, raising his fame and status. It is not an overstatement to say that he created the history of Japanese crystal glass. Living up to his will and the tradition, the company still produces only the finest crystal glass.
The one most important characteristic of crystal glass is the transparent appearance. In order to make truly transparent glass without a spec of cloudiness, it is important to use the most select materials. At Kagami Crystal, the highest standards are applied in the selection of materials. Only the purest silica sand with minimum iron content and impurities is used. That pure white sand is the key to the transparency of the glass. The selective attitude is shared by the workers in the factory. The factory is divided according to work processes, and each section is manned by experts of the particular process. Of course the factory is hot when you consider the 1000 degree fire burning there, but it seemed that the fire burning in the serious eyes of the workers were just as hot.
The graveur technique
One of the techniques Kozo Kagami learned in Germany was a glass sculpting technique called the graveur technique. It is a technique which involves applying abrasives on a rotating copper disk to sculpt the glass surface. By changing the type of the grinder, the surface of the glass can be changed to high polish or, made to have a blurred effect. Tiny curves can be scribed onto the glass, making realistic expressions possible. Nakata took a wine glass with a sculpture of falling cherry blossoms. It had some blurring effects and he was admiring the glass stating ”If I poured some rosé in this, it would really look great.”
Nakata took a shot at the graveur technique himself. He tried to apply the copper disk according to the design sketch but it doesn’t go as well as he hoped. According to the instructing graveurer, the actual spot where the sculpting is done is hidden by the copper disk, and it is usually impossible to even hit the target the first time, so in that respect, Nakata passed the first test.
Beautifully sculptured drawings on perfectly transparent glass. That is first rate upholstery. But even more, with crystal glass, the lingering echoes of the glass against each other in a toast is beautiful . It is something that gives our lives the sense of luxury.
- "KAGAMI CRYSTAL Co., Ltd "
- 4-5 Koyodai , Ryugasaki, Ibaraki, 301-0852
- URL http://www.kagami.jp/english/index.html