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.

Continue reading
Interested in selling a work by George Nakashima?
Consign with Mearto
Get your George Nakashima item appraised within 48 hours
Upload your item for appraisal
1
3
5
All
Loading..
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Plank daybed
1029 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Plank daybed Plank daybed, New Hope, PA, 1958; Walnut, birch plywood, upho...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Kornblut cabinet
1032 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Kornblut cabinet Kornblut cabinet, New Hope, PA, 1965; Walnut; Signed and ...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Plank daybed
1028 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Plank daybed Plank daybed, New Hope, PA, 1958; Walnut, birch plywood, upho...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Double-pedestal...
1027 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Double-pedestal... Double-pedestal desk, New Hope, PA, 1974; Figured walnu...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Six grass-seated...
1143 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Six grass-seated... Set of six Grass Seated Chairs, New Hope, PA, 1957; Wa...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Large trestle...
1142 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Large trestle... Large trestle dining table, New Hope, PA, 1961; Cherry, r...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Large low...
1145 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Large low... Large long daybed/bench, New Hope, PA, 1956; Cherry; Unmarked...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Fine Minguren...
1141 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Fine Minguren... Fine Minguren coffee table, New Hope, PA, 1974; East Indi...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Conoid...
1139 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Conoid... Conoid Cross-Legged End Table, New Hope, PA, 1968; English oak b...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Long Chair with...
1136 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Long Chair with... Long Chair with Arm Rest, New Hope, PA, 1960; Walnut, u...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Triple dresser
1137 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Triple dresser Triple dresser, New Hope, PA, 1965; Walnut; Signed with cli...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Special side...
1138 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Special side... Special side cabinet on Kornblut base, New Hope, PA, 1965;...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Five early Mira...
1037 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Five early Mira... Five early Mira chairs, New Hope, PA, ca. 1952/1960; Ch...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Sliding door...
1034 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Sliding door... Sliding door cabinet, New Hope, PA, 1962; Walnut; Signed w...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Hanging Wall Case
1036 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Hanging Wall Case Hanging Wall Case, New Hope, PA, 1973; Walnut, oak inter...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Conoid dining...
1030 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Conoid dining... Conoid dining table, New Hope, PA, 1975; Walnut, rosewood...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Special side cabinet
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSSpecial side cabinet on Kornblut base...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Conoid Cross-Legged End Table
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSConoid Cross-Legged End Table, New Ho...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Plank daybed
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSPlank daybed, New Hope, PA, 1958Walnu...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Double-pedestal desk
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSDouble-pedestal desk, New Hope, PA, 1...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Plank daybed
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSPlank daybed, New Hope, PA, 1958Walnu...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Eight New chairs
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSEight New chairs, six side- two arm-,...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Five early Mira chairs
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSFive early Mira chairs, New Hope, PA,...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Sliding door HiFi cabinet
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSSliding door HiFi cabinet, New Hope, ...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Tall dresser
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSTall dresser, New Hope, PA, 1965Walnu...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Kornblut cabinet
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSKornblut cabinet, New Hope, PA, 1965W...
Feb 28, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Side table
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSSide table, New Hope, PA, 1971Cherry,...
Feb 27, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Rare shogi table
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIOS Rare shogi table, New Hope, PA Scor...
Feb 27, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Bench
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990) NAKASHIMA STUDIOS Bench, New Hope, PA Walnut Unmarked...
Feb 27, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA; WIDDICOMB Sundra coffee table
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)WIDDICOMBSundra coffee table (no. 200), Grand Rapids, ...
Feb 27, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Pair of twin...
656 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Pair of twin... Pair of twin headboards, New Hope, PA, 1967; Walnut; Unmark...
Feb 27, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Bench
652 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Bench Bench, New Hope, PA; Walnut; Unmarked; 15" x 59" x 19" Some shallow d...
Feb 27, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA; WIDDICOMB Sundra...
655 GEORGE NAKASHIMA; WIDDICOMB Sundra... Sundra coffee table (no. 200), Grand Rapids, MI, 1959;...
Feb 27, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Pair of twin headboards
Description: GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905 - 1990)NAKASHIMA STUDIOSPair of twin headboards, New Hope, PA...
Feb 27, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Side table
654 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Side table Side table, New Hope, PA, 1971; Cherry, walnut; Unmarked; 17" x ...
Feb 27, 2016
GEORGE NAKASHIMA Rare shogi table
653 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Rare shogi table Rare shogi table, New Hope, PA; Scored walnut; Table unmar...
Feb 27, 2016
A LOW BENCH
A LOW BENCH GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905-1990), 1963 walnut, signed Rolknick to underside 13 in. (33 cm...
Feb 24, 2016
A TWO-TIER 'PORTSMOUTH' SIDE TABLE
A TWO-TIER 'PORTSMOUTH' SIDE TABLE GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905-1990), 1971 walnut, signed Donovan to u...
Feb 24, 2016
A PAIR OF BEDSIDE CABINETS
A PAIR OF BEDSIDE CABINETS GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905-1990), 1973 walnut, on cross-plank bases 25 ¼ i...
Feb 24, 2016
A TWO-TIER 'PORTSMOUTH' SIDE TABLE GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905-1990), 1971
A TWO-TIER 'PORTSMOUTH' SIDE TABLE GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905-1990), 1971 walnut, signed Donovan to u...
Feb 24, 2016
A PAIR OF BEDSIDE CABINETS GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905-1990), 1973
A PAIR OF BEDSIDE CABINETS GEORGE NAKASHIMA (1905-1990), 1973 walnut, on cross-plank bases 25 ¼ i...
Feb 24, 2016
George Nakashima Free Form Coffee Table
Description: George Katsutoshi Nakashima (Japanese American, May 24, 1905-June 15, 1990) free for...
Feb 20, 2016
Walnut & Hickory Conoid Chair, After Nakashima
Description: George Nakashima (American, 1905 - 1990). A walnut and hickory 'Conoid' chair with s...
Jan 03, 2016
1 2 3 4 6 Next →

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.