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Looking Into the Eyes of Ai Teramoto’s Black and White Drawings

ai teramoto

The eyes are the windows to the soul, according to the old English proverb. For Ai Teramoto, a young artist based in Tokyo, they are also the source of human creativity and imagination. Up until 2 years ago Teramoto was a student at Musashino Art University majoring in fashion. But after graduating she began exhibiting a series of black and white drawings that combine her intrigue for human eyes with her background in fashion.

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Bacon Belts, Curry Necklaces and Other Realistic Food Sample Jewelry

hatanaka food sample jewelry

tsukimi soba necklace

“What looks like spaghetti Bolognese and keeps fresh on the shelf for 50 years?” asked the NYT in 1985. Japanese realistic fake food samples, of course, which have become almost as famous as the country’s delectable cuisines. It’s a craft that’s been raised to an art and line the display cases of restaurants throughout the country.

Based in Saitama prefecture, Hatanaka is a manufacturer who has been creating real-as-life food samples since 1965. But recently, unimpressed with the growth of the restaurant business, decided to get into the fashion and accessories business as well, turning their food models into necklaces, earrings and belts.

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TeamLab’s Sprawling Interactive Park for Kids at Miraikan

teamlab future park miraikan

Two years ago TeamLab, the Japanese tech collective of artists, programmers, designers and other technology specialists, held an exhibition in Taiwan. Once it was installed, Toshiyuki Inoko, the ringleader of the group, and several members visited the show on a weekend where they encountered an unexpected sight. “The museum was packed with parents and their kids,” recalls* Inoko. When it comes to museum in Japan, and much of the U.S., children aren’t always the most welcome of visitors. But here “children were expected to scream and run around.”

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Vintage Posters from the 60s and 70s by Kazumasa Nagai

kazumasa nagai poster

Asahi Steinie, 1965

At the age of 85, graphic designer Kazumasa Nagai may be slowing down but his career is certainly not. If anything, it’s been picking up over the last 12 months. At a large retrospective of his work last year the fashion designer Issey Miyake was inspired to create a line of clothing based on his designs. Then, an even larger exhibition was held this year featuring an astounding 475 posters he created during his 57-year career. (“There must be roughly double this,” he remarked at the exhibition, referring to his entire body of work.)

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An Illustrated 2015 Daruma Calendar by Akiko da Silva

akiko dasilva daruma calendar

Japan-based designer Akiko da Silva has created an adorably illustrated 2015 calendar featuring the daruma, one of Japan’s most beloved New Year’s icons. “Daruma dolls are Japanese talismans of perseverance and good luck,” explains Akiko. Modeled after Zen Buddhism’s Bodhidharma, the hollowed out, roundish doll is portrayed without arms or legs because, according to legend, the Bodhidharma’s legs and arms fell off from atrophy after meditating for 9 years.

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Fashion and Graphic Design Collide in a Collaboration between Issey Miyake and Kazumasa Nagai

Kazumasa Nagai pleats please

The Japanese graphic designer Kazumasa Nagai always designs his own exhibition posters. And it’s definitely not because he’s short on funds. At 85, his name is almost legendary. He’s not only created the logos for major companies like Mitsubishi UFJ, Nissin and the now notorious TEPCO, but also thousands of posters (yes, thousands) for events, advertisements and personal liking.

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Walk Through an Installation of 65,000 Shimmering Watch Base Plates

citizen watch base plate installation

The design team at Japanese watch-maker CITIZEN and paris-based architectural office DGT have collaborated on a magical installation transforming a seemingly ordinary object into what looks like shimmering droplets of suspended rain. What makes the installation tick is 65,000 base plates, the basic component of a watch, which are suspended from the ceiling. The installation is on display at SPIRAL in Tokyo through November 28, 2014.

citizen watch base plate installation

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The Niku Towel Lets You Dry Yourself With Meat

niku towel

Meat-lovers rejoice! Now you can have your meat and dry yourself with it too.

If you’ve ever purchased beef in Japan this package will look very familiar. Everything from the brown butcher paper to the red and white slabs of beef ready to be laid down on a hot grill. And while this product won’t satisfy your salivary glands, they will satisfy your sweat glands. The Niku Towel (literally, meat towel) is a towel meant to resemble a large slice of beef. It can be taken to the beach, worn around your neck or simply hung in the bathroom.

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Kids Gloves by Nobumasa Takahashi (an anniversary giveaway!)

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Exactly 1 year ago Spoon & Tamago debuted its online shop. It’s been quite a ride and a huge learning experience, but we’ve loved every moment of it. Writing about Japanese art and design will always be our passion but there’s a certain satisfaction that comes with delivering it to someone’s hands.

To thank you all for your support we’re giving away 2 sets of these adorable Cubic Kids Gloves by artist Nobumasa Takahashi, who also designed the Wasanbon Sugar Skulls.

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Thin and Stylish Electronic Paper Watch by TAKT Project & FES

fes1You may remember the TAKT Project from their DIY creations combining industrially made objects with 3d-printed parts. This month the small but innovative design team is back to explore the possibilities of wearable design. They take a shot at combining elegance and technology by using a thin, electronic paper display. The FES watch was designed for Fashion Entertainments, a Tokyo-based startup that’s looking to revolutionize the fashion industry through the use of electronic paper. Their first product is this watch, which takes the stand of being a fashion item first, adding a layer of technological prowess on top of it.

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