Book review: Takenobu Igarashi A-Z explores 3D graphics of cult designer

Takenobu Igarashi’s bold and brilliant three-dimensional letters introduced new ways of expressing symbols. The cult Japanese graphic artist created new forms of visual communication – design that has conceptually altered how we view the medium. A new book celebrates the work of this visionary creative. Takenobu Igarashi: A-Z is an exhaustive guide to his life’s work, his experiments with typography and his methodology. It features... Read More

Junya Ishigami designs a giant slate bird for Serpentine Pavilion 2019

‘Public sculpture attempts to fill the gap between art and public to make art public and artists citizens again,’ so wrote artist Siah Armajani. And this is (almost) always the case with the Serpentine Galleries’ annual Pavilion commission in Hyde Park.  This season’s contribution is by Junya Ishigami. The Japanese architect is continuing his conversation with free space philosophy here; his organic architecture is seeking... Read More

Japan House London presents ‘Prototyping in Tokyo’ to illustrate design-led innovation

‘I’m told there is something Japanese in my prototyping,’ says professor Yamanaka Shunji, ‘that it has this “Japanese style”’, he smiles as he guides us around ‘Prototyping in Tokyo: Illustrating Design-led Innovation’ (until 17 March, 2019). The design engineer and University of Tokyo professor continues: ‘I don’t go about trying to be so, but perhaps there is something in the attitude that is Japanese.’ We are at the latest... Read More

Wa: The Essence of Japanese Design

European modernism’s simplicity pivots on rationality. Modern society demanded a change in our relationship with objects, and western modernism found new forms to express this. Here modernism fought against superfluous decorative design. The simplicity of Japanese design, however, comes from somewhere entirely different. A quite style had begun to emerge as far back as the mid-fifteenth century in Japan, following the ten year ?nin no Ran civil... Read More

Design team discuss Infiniti Emerg-e

A month before the Geneva Motor Show a few of us were called to Park Royal Studios in West London for a preview of Infiniti’s latest design study. Emerg-e joins the 2009 Essence and 2011 Etherea – collectively they speak of the marque’s design direction. To put all this into context Nissan’s luxury arm, which existed in the US as a premium brand, entered Europe in 2008 – the move prompting a much needed rethink of its design language. The... Read More

Infiniti: The seductive alternative

It is the era of ‘challenger brands’ – smaller companies that confront powerful firms by simply being individual, fun – almost irreverent. Opting for a strong narrative that portrays almost a human touch, they are gaining customer respect especially at a time when big brands equal big money, and the greed associated with the current economic slump. Apple is one of the most successful challenger marques, its boss Steve Jobs famously... Read More