Yutaro is a former business associate of mine in Tokyo, and over the years we have exchanged a number of gifts. He was recently in Los Angeles, and we had a chance to meet and catch up on things. As is the Japanese tradition, we used the occasion as reason to exchange gifts. He has always admired my woodworking, so I made sure he had a nice hollow form to take back to Tokyo. In return, he presented me with a beautiful example of Japanese woodturning, a nested set of oryoki bowls. Oryoki bowls are used by Buddhist monks, and are considered one of their essential possessions (along with their robe).
The bowls range in size from about 6" to 3" in diameter, and they are finished with a satin lacquer. I don't know what type of wood they are made of, and I don't know if they were cored from a single blank (I kind of doubt it, seeing how close they are in size). What I do know is that it's a beautiful set that makes a great addition to my personal collection of turned wood.