Around the middle of the Muromachi era, Sousetsu, the second son of Raiei, owner of the Takayama castle, asked his close friend Murata Juko, superior of temple Shomeidera, to produce a bamboo whisk. This is said to be the start of the Takayama whisks' production.
Unge chasen with three rows of tines instead of the usual two Note about the whisks ( chasen ): Commonly the Japanese word for tea whisk is written with the two Kanji 茶 = cha and 筅 = sen. It is only in Takayama (Nara prefecture) that the Kanji 筌 = sen is used. Only Takayama chasen are known to be the 'perfect' whisks.
Nakata Kizo was born 1940 in Takayama, Ikoma, Nara prefecture.
Though he was the son of a rice farmer,at the age of 14 he was sent to acquire skillful hands by learning to make whisks at an apprentice public service.
After 6 years of study, he continued to learn various remaining techniques before becoming independent at the age of 25.
In 1975 he founded the Nakata Kizo cooperation.
Presently, about half of Japan's whisks are produced by his company.