George Nakashima valuations

Born in 1905 in Spokane, Washington, to Japanese immigrants, George Nakashima is an American woodworker and architect, who was a leading figure of the American craft movement and innovative 20th century furniture design. He was educated in architecture at the University of Washington and M.I.T.

After finishing his studies in 1931, Nakashima sold his car and bought an around-the-world steamship ticket. He traveled around in France, living the bohemian life in Paris for a year, India and Japan. In Japan, while working for Antonin Raymond -American architect who also collaborated with Frank Lloyd Wright-, Nakashima journeyed through Japan in detail, learning Japanese architecture and designs. Throughout his travels, Nakashima absorbed both traditional and modern aspects of art, design and culture and melded them in his unique style.

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GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905-1990)
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905-1990) A SIDEBOARD WITH CABINET, CIRCA 1965 sideboard with four drawers and...
Jun 08, 2016
George Nakashima
client's name in ink to underside burled oak, with Indian rosewood butterfly key 17 x 77 3/4  x 2...
Jun 07, 2016
George Nakashima
East Indian Rosewood and American black walnut 28 5/8  x 108 1/8  x 40 1/8  in. (72.7 x 274.6 x 1...
Jun 07, 2016
George and Mira Nakashima
designed by George Nakashima, executed by Mira Nakashima signed Mira Nakashima/Sept. 12 1991 Engl...
Jun 07, 2016
George Nakashima
client's name in ink to underside of one chair black walnut, hickory each: 33 3/4  x 34 1/4  x 33...
Jun 07, 2016
George Nakashima
walnut 14 1/4  x 71 x 13 in. (36.2  x 180.3 x 33 cm.) circa 1965
Jun 07, 2016
George Nakashima
black walnut 20 x 31 1/2  x 14 3/4  in. (50.8 x 80 x 37.5 cm.) circa 1970
Jun 07, 2016
George Nakashima
client's name in ink to underside walnut 15 3/8  x 73 1/2  x 26 in. (38.9 x 186.7 x 66 cm.) 1975
Jun 07, 2016
George Nakashima
American black walnut, East Indian rosewood, holly and parchment 59 in. (149.8 cm) high including...
Jun 07, 2016
George Nakashima
with client's name to the underside American black walnut and burl 22 x 18 x 20 in. (55.9 x 45.7 ...
Jun 07, 2016
George Nakashima
each signed George Nakashima/May 20 1989 with client's name in ink walnut, hickory each: 35 1/2  ...
Jun 07, 2016
George Nakashima
each shelf with client's name American black walnut 71 1/8  x 48 x 14 1/4  in. (180.7 x 121.9 x 3...
Jun 07, 2016
George Nakashima
comprising two armchairs and six side chairs each signed, dated and with client's name to the und...
Jun 07, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA; WIDDICOMB Origins cabinet
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) WIDDICOMB Origins cabinet, Grand Rapids, MI, ca. 1959...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Hanging Wall Case
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Hanging Wall Case, New Hope, PA Waln...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Six New chairs
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIOSix New dining chairs, New Hope, PA, ...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Trestle dining table
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIOTrestle dining table, New Hope, PA, 1...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Sofa
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Sofa, New Hope, PA, 1954 Walnut, uph...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Sliding door cabinet
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIOSliding door cabinet, New Hope, PA, 1...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Six Grass-Seated chairs
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Six Grass-Seated chairs, New Hope, P...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
790 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Bookcase, New Hope, PA, 1964; Walnut; Signed with client n...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
788 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Conoid chair, New Hope, PA, 1975; Walnut, hickory; Signed ...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
795 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Sliding door cabinet, New Hope, PA,1964; Walnut; Unmarked;...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
784 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Lounge chair, New Hope, PA, 1954; Walnut, upholstery; Unma...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
787 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Slab coffee table, New Hope, PA, 1973; Figured walnut; Sig...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
786 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Hanging Wall Case, New Hope, PA, 1958; Walnut; Signed with...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
785 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Sliding door cabinet, New Hope, PA, 1956; Walnut; Signed w...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
782 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Double pedestal desk, New Hope, PA, 1977; Walnut; Signed w...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
796 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Origins cabinet, Grand Rapids, MI, ca. 1959; Walnut, brass...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
789 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... New rocking chair, New Hope, PA, 1983; Walnut, hickory; Si...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
781 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Six Grass-Seated chairs, New Hope, PA, 1958; Walnut, grass...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
794 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Hanging Wall Case, New Hope, PA; Walnut; Unmarked; 14" x 7...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
792 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Trestle dining table, New Hope, PA, 1956; Walnut, rosewood...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
793 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Six New dining chairs, New Hope, PA, 1956-57; Walnut, hick...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
791 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Single pedestal desk and Captain's chair, New Hope, PA, 19...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
780 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Trestle dining table, New Hope, PA, 1958; Oak, walnut; Unm...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
783 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Sofa, New Hope, PA, 1954; Walnut, upholstery; Unmarked; 31...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
779 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Dresser, New Hope, PA, 1954; Walnut; Unmarked; 32" x 60" x...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
777 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Conoid coffee table, New Hope PA, 1955-57; Figured walnut,...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);...
778 GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990);... Dresser, New Hope, PA, 1954; Walnut; Unmarked; 32" x 60" x...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Lounge chair
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Lounge chair, New Hope, PA, 1954 Wal...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Conoid chair
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Conoid chair, New Hope, PA, 1975 Wal...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA New rocking chair
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO New rocking chair, New Hope, PA, 198...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Sliding door cabinet
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Sliding door cabinet, New Hope, PA,1...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Bookcase
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Bookcase, New Hope, PA, 1964 Walnut ...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Desk and Captain's chair
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Single pedestal desk and Captain's c...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Hanging Wall Case
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Hanging Wall Case, New Hope, PA, 195...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Slab coffee table
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIOSlab coffee table, New Hope, PA, 1973...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Double pedestal desk
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Double pedestal desk, New Hope, PA, ...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Trestle dining table
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Trestle dining table, New Hope, PA, ...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Dresser
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Dresser, New Hope, PA, 1954 Walnut U...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Dresser
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIO Dresser, New Hope, PA, 1954 Walnut U...
Jun 05, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Conoid coffee table
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIOConoid coffee table, New Hope PA, 195...
Jun 05, 2016
George NAKASHIMA (1905-1990) & KNOLL (éditeur) Grande table basse 'M10', dessin de 1946, en hêtre et acajou, piétement formé d?éléme...
A large beech and mahogany wood 'M10' coffee table with slender legs. Height. 15 1/2 IN - Width. ...
Jun 02, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905-1990)
Grande table en noyer d'Amérique,'Conoid'. Piétement formé de fûts latéraux de section rectangula...
Jun 02, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905-1990)
Suite de quatre chaises, modèle 'Grass-Seated Chairs', création 1950, structure en noyer, piéteme...
Jun 02, 2016
George Nakashima (1905-1990)
George Nakashima (1905-1990) M10 Table basse Noyer Date de création : 1947 H 50,5 × L 97 × P 86,5 cm
Jun 02, 2016
George NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) - Bureau - Circa 1965
George NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) Bureau - Circa 1965 Piètement, structure et plateau en noyer d'Amé...
May 31, 2016
George NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) - Suite de trois tables gigognes dites
George NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) Suite de trois tables gigognes dites 'Amoeba' - Création 1951 Stru...
May 31, 2016
George Nakashima Special Bench/Coffee Tables
Description: American (New Hope, Pennsylvania), mid-20th century. A pair of George Nakashima (190...
May 06, 2016

However, the turning point of his career came in a film-like moment. During the WWII, like many Asian Americans, Nakashima was exiled into an Internment Camp. Here, he met an old master of traditional Japanese carpentry and under his teaching, learned the secrets of traditional Japanese hand tools and joinery techniques. More importantly, he learned to approach the wood with discipline and patience, understanding it better and seeking perfection in each phase of his design. Nakashima had a special relationship with wood and the tree itself, visible in his memoir “The Soul of a Tree”.

He gave a second life to the trees with his signature woodworking design, using massive solid wood slabs with unfinished natural edges or multiple slabs connected with butterfly joints. He is known for his preference of walnut, ash and cherry and accepting materials that were rejected by other woodworkers for their imperfections.

Nakashima always included family members in his studio, most importantly his Harvard educated architect daughter Mira Nakashima, who took over his legacy. Today, Nakashima furniture is favored by both the collections of traditional institutions such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Smithsonian Institution and Philadelphia Museum of Art, as well as in the homes of Stephen Spielberg, Brad Pitt, Diane von Furstenberg and Steve Jobs.

What is George Nakashima known for?

Two of the most memorable pieces designed by George Nakashima are the Straight-Backed Chair for Knoll and the Widdicomb-Mueller Dining Table. Known for creating everyday functional objects instead of furniture with elaborate designs, Nakashima’s Straight-Backed Chair of 1946, which has unmistakable craftsmanship and sculptural lines, has inspired a lot of new designers. The Widdicomb-Mueller Dining Table is an extension dining table made out of his signature rare timbers. He used highly figured walnut, rosewood, laurel and Carpathian Elm timbers to build it. This table looks distinct because of its six tapered hexagonal legs and stretchers.

What auction houses (and galleries) have sold George Nakashima items?

George Nakashima’s furniture pieces are very popular among art and antique collectors. Some of his works, namely the Minguren II Low Table and the Walnut Hanging Cabinet, were on display at the Todd Merrill Studio in New York and the Hemisphere Gallery in London, respectively. Auction houses have a few lots of his famous pieces as well. Wright auctions Nakashima’s 1972 Rare Cabinet while Christie’s has sold some of his pieces which were named A Wall Cabinet, A Walnut Console, and An Important Long Chair.

What is the price range of George Nakashima items?

George Nakashima’s designs are highly regarded by critics and collectors. Whenever his pieces come out at an auction, it commands a price of anywhere from $25,000 to $300,000. The most expensive Nakashima furniture auctioned by Christie’s was the 1978 A Coffee Table, which was sold for $149,000. His works has reached auction houses around the world, particularly in Seoul and United Kingdom. 

Interesting info about George Nakashima

Many still can’t believe how a coffee table with rough edges was sold for 30% more than its estimated price. The Table Basse, which Nakashima built between 1950 and 1960, was sold for 97,000 euros or about $112,000. Auctioneers estimated its worth to be around 40,000 and 60,000 euros. But then, Nakashima’s imperfect intricacies are exactly what he is known for. He would take all the wood that other furniture makers would discard and use it to build interesting coffee tables. He would make the top smooth but leave the outer edges rugged, creating a very distinctive appeal.