The Artists

Tansu
by: Bob Sanderson

Tansu is the term given to the antique cabinetry of Japan made between 1657 and 1910. Literally, the word Tansu means chest but frequently is used as a general term for all Japanese furniture. To the Japanese, with their reverence for space and respect for the beauty of materials, Tansu represented all their cultural values: simplicity, balance, utility and durability.
This Tansu is constructed of elm, Port Orford cedar and kwila. Construction is solid dovetailed carcass with handmade patinated brass hardware. It has a shellac polish and wax finish.

The elm came from three planks. The first plank yielded the carcass and the burl for the doors. The drawer fronts came from a darker swirly plank. The elm in the back panel was a gift from Jim Krenov. The interior drawer box is made of Port Orford cedar with a dash of color created by decay.

The brass hardware was cut from solid stock. Shaped and finished by hand, the hardware was placed in sawdust wet with a solution of water and cupric nitrate to create the patina.

23½" x 20½" x 12½"

Elm, Port Orford Cedar, and Kwila