Yako Hodo


B. 1940, Niigata Prefecture, Japan

Yako learned the basics of bamboo technique at vocational school and continued his studies as an apprentice tomasters Nakajima Hoso, Nakamura Yukosai, and Baba Shodo. Within a decade, while he was still in his 20s, his work garnered major awards, culminating in 2000 with a prestigious medal given by the Emperor and the Japanese government.

Yako, who lives in Saitama prefecture inthe Tokyo region, has created pieces that are housed in the collections of the San Francisco Asian Art Museum, Mint Museum, and Fukaya City Museum. He has exhibited at the Long House Reserve in East Hampton, N.Y.

“When I make a basket, I draw rough sketches first to conceptualize the image I would like to capture,” Yakosays. “When I have a hard time finding out what adjustments to make, I try listening to the bamboo and asking it what I should do. It is important to improve one’s skills and techniques but mental preparation and conceptualization are just as important. The baskets I make reflect both function and dream.”



1956, Apprenticed to Nakajima Hoso for four years

1964, Moved to Tokyo

1964, Studied under Nakamura Yukosai for one year

1965, Apprenticed to Baba Shodo for eight years


Exhibitions & Accolades

1961, Admitted to Niigata Prefecture Art Exhibition for the first time

1968, Winner, Tokyo Governor’s Award, Japan Art Exhibition

1973, Admitted to Nitten (Japan Fine Arts Exhibition) for the first time

1973, Moved to Saitama Prefecture and became independent

1978, Admitted to Japan Modern Craft Arts Exhibition for the first time

1978, Became a member of Japan Modern Craft Arts Association

1979, Winner, Saitama Governor’s Award, Prefecture Arts Exhibition

1980, Three-Person Exhibition

1982, Solo Exhibition

1985, Group Exhibition at Saitama Arts Exhibition

1989, Admitted to Nitten

1992, Admitted to Nitten

1992, Judge at Saitama Prefecture Arts Exhibition

1994, Admitted to Japan Traditional Craft Arts Exhibition for the first time

1995, Solo Exhibition in Kumagaya

1995, Winner of Exceptional Technique Award (Ministry of Labor Award)

1997, Admitted to Japan Traditional Craft Arts Exhibition

1997, SOFA Chicago

1998, Admitted to Japan Traditional Craft Arts Exhibition

1998, Became full member of Traditional Craft ArtsAssociation

1998, Solo Exhibition at Fukaya City Library

1998, Bamboo Masterworks, Asia Society, New York City

1998, International Asian Art Fair, New York City

1998, SOFA New York

1998, SOFA Chicago

1998, International 20th Century Art Fair, New York City

2000, Winner, Order of Cultural Merit from Emperor of Japanand Ministry of Culture

2000, Appeared on CNN “Style”

2000, Bamboo Masterwork, Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, CA

2000, International Asian Art Fair, New York

2000, SOFA New York + SOFA Chicago

2000, International 20th Century Art Fair, New York

2001, Bamboo Masterworks, Honolulu Academy of Art, Honolulu, HI

2001, Best Bamboo Baskets: The Cotsen Collection, at Long House Reserve, East Hampton, NY

2001, Meet the Masters,TAI Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

2001, Arts of Pacific Asia, San Francisco, CA

2001, International Asian Art Fair, New York

2002, International Art & Design Fair, New York

2002, Bamboo Masterworks, Pacific Asia Museum, Pasadena, CA

2002, Bamboo Masterworks, Field Museum, Chicago, IL

2004, International Art & Design Show, New York

2004, International Asian Art Fair, New York

2004, SOFA New York

2004, Exhibited in the Hand Workshop Art Center, Richmond, VA

2005, Weavers of Wonder, Naples Museum of Art, FL

2006, Hin: The Quiet Beautyof Japanese Art, Grinnell College, Iowa

2006, Hin: The Quiet Beauty of Japanese Art, Chicago Cultural Center

2006, Solo exhibition, TAI Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico(first solo show in the US)

2006, Beyond Basketry:Japanese Bamboo Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

2006, Exhibited at Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

2007, Listening to Bamboo: Japanese Baskets from the Collection of Ritalou and Robert Harris, Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, CornellUniversity, Ithaca NY

2007, Palm Beach!, Florida

2007, International Asian Art Fair, New York

2008, A Sensei and His Students, TAI Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

2009, New Bamboo:Contemporary Japanese Masters, The Japan Society, New York

2009, Many Shapes of Bamboo III, Oita Prefectural Art Museum, Oita, Japan

2009, Listening to Bamboo, Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University, Ithaca NY

2011, Houston Art Fair, Houston, TX

2011, Int’l. Fine Art and Antique Dealers Show, New York

2011, International Fine Art & Antique Dealers Show, NewYork

2011, SOFA Chicago

2012, SOFA New York

2017, Masterpieces of Japanese Bamboo Art, TAI Modern at Joan B Mirviss LTD, New York, NY


Museum Collections

Fukaya City Museum, Japan

  • Masterpieces of Japanese Bamboo Art

  • Yako Hodo

  • A Sensei and his Students: Baba Shodo, Fujitsuka Shosei & Yako Hodo