An elaborate woman's wig
The wigs in Bunraku as called kazura, and there are a number of fundamental styles, depending upon the type of character being portrayed. It is the job of the wig masters (called tokoyama), to sew and create an appropriate hairstyle (keppatsu) for every role, based upon these fundamental styles. Also, the tokoyama does not just style the wigs; he also makes them by attaching hair to copper plates. The type of hair used is mostly human hair, but sometimes, in order to create the illusion of volume, the hair of a yak's tail is also used. The finished wig is then carefully placed upon, and then securely attached to, the head. When creating a special hairstyle, no oil is used, in order to prevent soiling the face, so the styling must be done only with water and beeswax (bintsuke).


Copyright 2004, by the Japan Arts Council. All rights reserved.