町田 彫剣 “桜吹雪”



町田 彫剣氏のように額に一家言を持つ彫り師であればなおのことだ。ここに見る七分袖の桜吹雪も、主題をあしらった腕に勝るとも劣らない見応えを呈している。指一本半ほどの太さで複雑に描き込まれた見切りは繊細でありながらも極めて力強い。

In the basic style of Japanese traditional tattooing, there are subjects such as musha-e (warrior painting), Buddhist painting, dragon or carp, and kesho-bori (ornament tattooing) such as cherry blossoms and autumn leaves decorate the margin, then background is filled with gaku like clouds and waves. However the composition which purposely omits the main theme and only uses kesho-bori and gaku is also very tasteful and is preferred by connoisseurs.

This is especially true if the tattooer is like Machida Horiken who has an expert opinion on gaku. Shichibu-sode (three-quarter sleeve) of sakura-fubuki seen here is no less spectacular than the sleeves with a subject. The intricately drawn one-and-a-half fingar wide mikiri (band of gaku) is delicate, yet extremely powerful.


The buds of the cherry blossoms swell up as if to announce the arrival of spring, and after blooming magnificently for only a short time, they fall all together. We feel “impermanence” and “mono-no-aware” (appreciaiton of the fleeting nature of beauty), and have loved cherry blossoms since ancient times as described in many waka poems. It would not be an exaggeration to say that cherry blossoms scattered by the wind are the very essence of the Japanese sense of beauty.

※町田 彫剣氏のインタビュー記事はこちら
※See Machida Horiken’s interview here
And see more of his work on Instagram

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