Posts tagged “Washi”.

Lightning Design by Limpalux

Limpalux: MJ Wall
MJ Wall by Limpalux

Beautifully designed and made by hand out of paper are these stunning lamps by Limpalux. The German designers Anja Eder and Michael Römer are the responsible duo behind these lamps that are built segment by segment out of Japanese paper in a carefully selected range of colors that makes the lamps glow friendly once they’re switched on. with a background in sculpture these lamps do make a statement in themselves but at the same time they don’t overpower a room – definitely lamps I would love to have in my flat if only there was some space left that would do them justice.


Moonjelly by Limpalux

Corona by Limpalux

Limpalux
Moonjelly and Corona (detail) by Limpalux
A peek into the Limpalux manufactory in Wuppertal Elberfeld, Germany.

Product photography by PATRICIA EICHERT PHOTOGRAPHY

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Recycling: washi tales

Recycling: washi tales
Recycling: washi tales

I came across Recycling: washi tales a while ago for the first time and ever since I’ve been going back to their homepage to look especially at the fabulous stage design… But first things first: Recycling: washi talesbrings to life in performance the human stories contained in sheet of “washi” (Japanese handmade paper) as it is recycled through time.” Four different stories centered around washi and different aspects of it as well as historical facts are told by a narrator and actors on a stage.

Recycling: washi tales
Picture of the performance of the fourth story of the washi tales: “Fujiwara Tamiko” with actress Sonoko Soeda

The fourth story told is about Fujiwara Tamiko, 10th Century Emperor Seiwa’s beloved consort. Upon his death she recycles love letters and poems he wrote her to make paper on which she writes sutras for his soul’s peace. She gives the sutras to his family and friends. The first recorded instance of recycling in Japanese chronicles: a woman transforming loss into prayer.”

This reflects the project’s aim to show not the usual notion of recycling, but to explore “aesthetic and spiritual values of recycling, beyond practical environmental concerns, into the realms of history and the imagination.” Nothing less should be expected when dealt with Japanese washi that has always been much more than simple “paper”.

washi tales  -  set design by Kyoko Ibe
Stage design for Recycling: washi tales by Kyoko Ibe


The performance/workshop is of course a “Gesamtkunstwerk” with a lot of people participating and working on it. Personally I especially cherish the work by Kyoko Ibe who has designed the stage. Kyoko Ibe is a Japanese artist who works mainly with paper to create her breathtaking installations. The idea of recycling – old ledgers, paintings, books etc. – forms an integral part of her work.

washi tales - detail (by kyoko ibe)
Detail: stage design for Recycling: washi tales by Kyoko Ibe


The fine strips of paper Kyoko Ibe uses for the stage design forRecycling: washi tales and that are partly even twisted remind me personally a lot of Shifu (Japanese woven paper cloth). Shifu is also all about recycling – originally old account books were used as a valuable raw material for clothes by poor farmers.

Recycling: washi tales : papermaking
Recycling: washi tales also explores and explains Japanese paper making


The workshop/performance has an educational background centered not only around recycling but also around traditional Japanese paper making. So if you ever wanted to know more about the making of washi you can find a wonderfully illustrated explanation here.

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