Top 10 Spoon & Tamago Posts of 2013

It’s been a fun and exciting year here at S&T headquarters. 2013 marked the launch of something that’s always been a twinkle in my eye since the start of this blog 7 years ago: the Spoon & Tamago Shop. It means a lot to not only write about Japanese art & design, but to also be able to deliver something to someone’s hands. I see it as an extension of learning about Japanese design.

Below are our most-read blog posts of 2013. They say web traffic is unpredictable, but going through the top 10 made me realize something. A large majority of our posts that did the best, actually were the best. By that I mean that they were stories that we spent a lot of time on and, in many cases, we were the first to report on them amongst Western media outlets. Sometimes we were even ahead of the Japanese media.

So thank you to all our readers who keep coming back, as well as those who are just discovering S&T. I wish you all a Happy Holidays wherever you are in the world.

1. Tatsuo Horiuchi | the 73-year old Excel spreadsheet artist

tatsuo horiuchi (1)

Our most-read post this year was about ingenuity and invention. A 73-year old retired man took a seemingly boring tool, Microsoft Excel, and used it to create some amazingly beautiful landscapes. Take that financial analysts!

2. Dad spends 7 years on incredibly detailed maze


Everyone dreams about discovering treasure in their attic. Well that’s what happened to @Kya7y earlier this year when she discovered this amazingly intricate hand-drawn maze that her father had created 30 years ago. Coming home after his job as a school janitor, the father spent his nights creating the masterpiece. It took an astounding 7 years.

We reached out to the daughter and became the first outlet to carry prints of this amazing work of art. It was also an important catalyst in actually launching our shop.

3. 6 Months of Tonal Vibrations of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake Expressed in Crystal

crystalize tokujin yoshioka (16)

Everything that Tokujin Yoshioka does is amazing, which is why he’s featured in our explore page. It also explains why he’s in the top 3 for an incredibly poetic piece. For 6 months he subjected crystals to the tonal vibrations of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake. The resulting bed of crystal growth became part of his solo exhibition that took place over the Summer.

“Nature shows us a beauty that exceeds our imagination,” he says. “The forms of nature are unique and cannot be reproduced. This endows them with mysterious beauty and makes them fascinating to us”.

4. The world’s first inflatable concert hall will begin touring ravaged areas of Japan

arc nova inflatable concert hall (8)

Some questioned it’s acoustics but conceptually it wowed the world. Japanese architect Arata Isozaki teamed up with British-Indian sculptor Anish Kapoor to create an inflatable concert hall. Dubbed Arc Nova, the mobile venue toured the earthquake and tsunami-ravaged areas of Tohoku, delivering hope and encouragement in the form of music.

5. X-Ray Portraits of Couples by Saiko Kanda and Mayuka Hayashi

MCJDA (x-ray portrait 2)

I love reviewing art school exhibitions and uncovering talent in the creative youth. In fact, the student work sub-genre is one of my favorites. And one of our most popular posts was a relatively recent feature we did on two girls who photographed coupled cuddling. And they did it with x-ray machines. Romantic? No. Intimate? Absolutely.

6. The Deep Sea Mystery Circle – a love story

underwater mystery circle 2

Interestingly, this was our only post to make the top 10, that wasn’t published in 2013. Last year we broke the story about a small sculptor on a quest for true love. A rate type of puffer fish found in Amami-Oshima creates underwater sand sculptures designed specifically to attract mates. It’s a fascinating story and I suggest you read it in its entirety, if you haven’t done so already.

We even helped coordinate a BBC shoot about the puffer fish for an upcoming documentary.

7. Kazuki Yamamoto takes latte art to the next frontier

latte art dali clock

The title says it all. When it comes to latte art, it’s hard to beat Kazuki Yamamoto.

8. Residence of Daisen | A house designed to fit in between the gaps of trees

Residence of Daisen (6)

Giving first priority to the legitimate inhabitants of this forest in Japan, architect Keisuke Kawaguchi, designed a home to fit in between the gaps of trees.

9. Chew on this: FabCafe lets you create a gummy replica of yourself for White Day


For a White Day project FabCafe in Shibuya let guys come in and make gummy replicas of themselves to give to that special lady.

10. Rough draft sketches turned into actual furniture by Daigo Fukawa

rough sketch products (9)

Last but certainly not least is another student project. Daigo Fukawa took his rough sketches of tables, chairs and other furniture, and turned them into actual pieces.

Thanks again for reading! Want to get caught up over the holidays? Check out our top posts from previous years!

1 Comment

  1. What? The hats didn’t make the top ten? Bjork will not be happy.

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