ARITA, Japan—Dutch designers Scholten & Baijings along with Japanese designer Teruhiro Yanagihara are at the helm of an ambitious project to create several unique porcelain tableware collections in collaboration with local craftsmen in Arita, Japan. Scholten, Baijings and Yanagihara teamed up with 14 international designers pairing them with with Arita-based potters; their ‘2016/ ‘ project aims to revive the area’s 400+ years porcelain industry, Arita writes.
Yanagihara explains the project aims to bring the works, which are now displayed in museums, back into everyday homes as domestic tableware.
My hope is to give the Arita porcelain industry back the coveted status it enjoyed during the 17th and 18th centuries. Aritaware used to be a very strong export and was shipped from Japan to the West through the Dutch East India Company. In those times, designs for Aritaware were dictated by the West and Arita craftsmen responded to those demands. The quality of Aritaware hasn’t changed, it is still there. Currently, people may appreciate Aritaware as a beautiful object displayed in a museum, but they aren’t using it in their daily life. We are now in the 21st century and we need to update Aritaware accordingly.
Scholten explains the collaboration with give the historic industry a much needed update as well as boost commerce in Arita, which is made up of over 150 potteries. To do so, he explains each designer was paired up with a local potter to collaborate on a collection.
Then we mixed and matched a potter with a designer. We tried to find a spectrum of designers, a balance between experimental and established work that can lift a new brand to another level.”
Dezeen writes London-based Tomas Alonso worked together with the Sehyou pottery to create series of containers that are all based on a circle and made using molds. The pieces can be used in different contexts and stacked in different arrangements.
Creative director Yanagihara designed both a collection and a limited-edition work for ‘2016/.’ Simple and stackable, his tableware collection is able to be mass produced at low cost. Meanwhile, his large limited-edition vases are entirely impractical – they are made from porous porcelain and cannot hold water.
You can view all the collections in ‘2016/’ here.
The collection debuted during Milan Design Week 2016.
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