One of the most iconic works of art in history is The Great Wave off Kanagawa by the 19th-century artist Hokusai. The best-known example of the Japanese art form of woodblock printing known as ukiyo-e, The Great Wave was part of Hokusai’s iconic Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji series that the artist produced in the 1830s. Today, it stands as a widely-recognized symbol of Japan and has been duplicated and imitated countless times around the world, while also serving as a source of inspiration and wonder to people from all walks of life. We count ourselves among the admirers of the artwork, which is why we’ve dedicated this week’s EDC spread to Hokusai’s masterpiece with a loadout celebrating Japanese culture and craftsmanship.
The Great Wave Enamel Pin
Kicking things off we have a miniature reproduction of the artwork itself. Sold by the official store of New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art — which houses an original impression of The Great Wave — this pin serves as an impressive compact recreation of Hokusai’s work. Crafted from stainless steel and enamel, it even features a reinterpretation of the artist’s signature.
Nagao Higonokami Friction Folder
Speaking of Japanese icons, we have the Nagao Higonokami. First crafted in 1894 with a design inspired by samurai swords, the simple and beautiful friction folder is now regarded as one of the most essential pocket knives to own. The version seen here is an authentic, Japan-made example featuring a blue paper steel reverse tanto blade and a stainless steel handle boasting a wave-like blue/gray pattern.
Niwaki Rattan Tsubo Secateurs
The national pastime of Japanese gardening goes hand-in-hand with the country’s art history, as both have a tendency of honoring simplicity, grace, and natural beauty. One essential tool for any Japanese gardener is a good pair of Secateurs. These special shears are used for clipping, pruning, dead heading, and more, and we’ve got a great pair here from the Japanese gardening tool specialists at Niwaki. These one-handed Secateurs are forged from premium S58C carbon steel in Sanjo, Japan, with handles wrapped in comfortable and natural Wisteria rattan.
Grand Seiko Shōsho GMT
For over 60 years, Grand Seiko has represented the pinnacle of Japanese watchmaking — and the global luxury brand just keeps getting better. Over the past few years, GS has begun a tradition of releasing annual “Seasons” collections that celebrate some of Japan’s 24 sekki (micro seasons) with dials inspired by the nation’s renowned natural beauty. In 2021, the collection featured four GMT watches, with the standout being the SBGJ249. Representing Shōsho, Japan’s high summer period following the rainy season, this Hi-Beat Automatic watch features an incredible rippled dial that represents the warm summer breezes blowing across the countryside’s recently-replenished lakes and ponds.