japanese art, design and culture

Posts from — April 2008

Number 62 by Bob Foundation

I think that some of the most creative work in Japan right now is being done by Bob Foundation. I blogged about there awesomer than awesome coat hanger a while ago. Now they’ve launched their own brand of paper products, “Number 62.” They just concluded their launch show at the National Art Center in Tokyo and the images look great!!


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Images courtesy of Bob Foundation

April 30, 2008   Comments Off

In the mood for brunch

My mood has officially shifted from ‘lemonade’ to ‘brunch.’ Some great organicy-looking tableware from quatre saisons‘ May ’08 catalog.

April 29, 2008   Comments Off

In the mood for lemonade

I love the May ’08 product lineup from quatre saisons.

April 29, 2008   Comments Off

Pecha Kucha New York – this Wednesday!

The 5th installment of Pecha Kucha New York is happening this Wednesday! Here are the details:

When: April 30, 2008 @ 7:00pm
Where: Element (GMAP)

Created by Klein Dytham Architecture (based out of Tokyo), Pecha Kucha (a Japanese onomatopoeia for the sound of conversation) is an event that invites a dozen professionals working in the creative/design field to show 20 slides for 20 seconds on whatever topic the please. The idea is to generate conversation and thoughts about art and design.

BTW – if you’re not familiar with the work of Klein Dytham Architecture I certainly recommend browsing their portfolio!

kda1.jpg kda2.jpg kda3.jpg kda4.jpg

April 28, 2008   Comments Off


I just finished browsing through the 120-page 2008 Spring | Summer catalog of Francfranc (possibly the equivalent of Crate&Barrel in Japan). I know 1 thing for sure. I am so wishing I was in Japan right now! Here are a few of my favorites.

Top: Deck Sofa | Bottom: Slant Sofa

Left: Emily Table Lamp| Right: Glaid Coffee Table

LOVE! the presentation (and the vases, of course)

Popup Toaster…adorable!

April 25, 2008   1 Comment

Museu de les Arts Decoratives

Anyone who was an art student probably remember how the significance of “negative space” was drilled into their heads. Well I admit, it is important, but it’s also important to go back and look at the impact it’s had on art and design. This is the concept behind “the utility of emptiness,” an exhibition currently going on at the Museu de les Arts Decoratives in Barcelona, Spain.

Personlly, I feel that they did an excellent job curating this show. Here are some of the selected works!

Living Tower (1968) by Verner Panton

Joc de coberts de servir (2001) by Judith Höfel


Event Horizon (1992) by Marc Newson

April 24, 2008   Comments Off


Image courtesy of whitneybiennial.com

You know, if it’s not one thing then it’s the other. The Whitney Biennial receives more than its fair share of criticism but this time I am siding with the critics. Here are 2 quotes directly from the exhibition’s wall texts and catalog:

“. . . invents puzzles out of nonsequiturs to seek congruence in seemingly incongruous situations, whether visual or spatial . . . inhabits those interstitial spaces between understanding and confusion.”

“Bove’s ‘settings’ draw on the style, and substance, of certain time-specific materials to resuscitate their referential possibilities, to pull them out of historical stasis and return them to active symbolic duty, where new adjacencies might reactivate latent meanings.”


This is exactly why people feel that art is pompous and pretentious. Museums are alienating – the complete opposite of what they should be engaged in – instead of educating the public.

via The Lost Art of Writing About Art

April 23, 2008   1 Comment

the best room of the year (so far)

I just have to post this room because I absolutely love so much of what’s going on. It’s the New York loft apartment of Australian stylist Sibella Court.






via A Cup Of Jotinyk → online magazine Inside Out

April 22, 2008   Comments Off

Intersections of Fine Art and Architecture PART7

To conclude my series on intersections between fine art and architecture/interior design, I would like to show the work of artist Michael Lin, who was born in Tokyo but is based in Taipei. In an interview Lin once said, “My work has moved away from the idea of a painting as an object. I’m more interested in creating a painting as a space to occupy.”

Lin conquers his spaces by adorning them with blown-up versions of traditional Taiwanese floral motifs. He then invites the viewers to interact with his pieces – much like one would in their own room – by sitting, sleeping and walking on them.



Images courtesy of Galerie Tanit

I felt that Lin’s work was super appropriate to show in my last post of the series because it is sort of a culmination of what I have been seeing, and what I have been trying to show my readers. Recently there has definitely been a shift in the proximity between fine art and architecture/interior design. Perhaps artists realized a new means of reaching out and communicating to more people. Or perhaps it was an inevitable change, what with interior design becoming more and more visible in the media.

April 22, 2008   Comments Off

Intersections of Fine Art and Architecture PART6

I was reviewing this ongoing series on fine art and architecture/interior design, and I decided there were 2 more artists that I wanted to show you. So I plan to finish up either today or tomorrow!

Daniel Buren
“The Colored Screens” (2007)

Image courtesy of Bortolami Dayan

It was quite a switch from the minimalist paintings that we had become accustomed to seeing from French artist Daniel Buren. Nonetheless, it was still in line with his site-specific installations, which he originally became known for. For his most recent show, Buren installed 48 plexiglass squares under New York’s high-line railway. More so than his other site-specific installations, “The Colored Screens” seemed more designy. I thought it was interesting that these kinds screens, an airy way of dividing a room into two, were displayed in way that seemingly has no functional purpose. Perhaps that obscurity was intentional?

April 21, 2008   2 Comments