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Welcome Keiji Ashizawa to HDF

Takumi Ota

Image By: Takumi Ota - Gravity Light 2008

Written by Keiji Ashizawa
Translated by Hannah Hernandez

Every week I would like to share design events, new product designs, interior design, and architecture in Tokyo and other various parts of Japan.  At the same time I would like to bring to light new findings of the city of Tokyo, including the charm as well as some of the problems from the perspectives of a professional working with architecture and design.

First I would like to introduce my own work. I would also like to give the details as to what resulted in writing this article.

A large part of my work is architectural design. I work mainly with commercial construction and residences. As for other work, I work in diverse areas such as interior design, furniture, and lighting design. Occasionally I also write articles relating to design and the way in which things are made like I am going to be here.  In Tokyo there are lots of jobs relating to design but there are also a multitude of excellent designers.  This means that competition is very intense, and that the architectural and design world is a harsh one. The reason for the many young designers like me who live in Tokyo working in different genres of design is thought to be largely because of these reasons.

Below are the several projects I have constructed in the past few years. As for detailed explanations please views the links.

Daici Ano

Image By: Daici Ano - 2 courts house 2006

As a designer what are the reasons for writing a weekly article? There are two main reasons.

The first reason is that I would like to reveal to the world the contents of Japan as well as the multitude of design especially in Tokyo. In short, I want to communicate what it is that I do on a daily basis as a designer and architect.

Images By:  Muga MIyahara & Daici Ano
Images By: Taro Mitzutani & Daici Ano – Flat pack system (left) and 11 Boxes(right)

The second reason is as an obligation to those who are involved with the design of this area. This statement needs a little explanation. Whether it is a geographical condition, language barriers, or market challenges, it can be said that there are no magazines that properly relay Japanese design overseas. It is possible to view information about Japanese design in overseas media, compensated by blogs that work with several types of design and cultures.  However most of the articles that are presented are written by authors abroad and presented by overseas magazines.

Image By: Daici Ano

Image By: Daici Ano - Prototype exhibition (left) and 2 courts house (right)

Occasionally, there are some things that are not yet for sale in Japan. There are articles that I think are great while on the other hand there are some articles that seem to have just been literally translated from the writers’ web site. Depending on the item being written about I felt as though there was considerable variation in the contents. Right now Japanese design is gathering a great amount of attention, and I think that there should be as many types of media following this as possible. Media and designers are interdependent; therefore without the strength of both parties, change is not possible. Information that is related to Japanese design should be released from the designers’ side in English. This to me is something that does not yet exist but seems as though it should. My hope is to bring more enthusiasm by doing this to readers as well as Japanese designers and architects. I now believe that it is my obligation to write articles weekly, as a person who happened to stumble across this site.  I don’t want it to seem too stiff so I would like to write while enjoying it.  I hope you enjoy this and I look forward to this opportunity.

Image By: Kozo Takayama - Bar Orange

Image By: Kozo Takayama - Bar Orange

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