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Scholten + Baijings is Reviving Industry by Design

2016/ is a new design collaboration commemorating historic Japanese porcelain practice, its provincial artisans, and the treasure of slow design in a fast paced world. 


October 19th, 2016

2016 marks the 400th anniversary of Arita – an ancient porcelain practice named after an idyllic village surrounded by mountains and forest in the Saga Prefecture in Japan. It was in Arita that Japan’s very first porcelain was made, and while the local industry has waned significantly over the years, Arita remains to be a porcelain town.

Led by Dutch design duo Scholten + Baijings and Japanese designer Teruhiro Yanagihara, 2016/ is a collaborative design project aimed at preserving the ancient Arita technique and reviving its local industry through design. 2016/ also commemorates 400 years of Dutch-Japanese relations. In past centuries, The Netherlands stood as a significant importer of Arita porcelain. Today, this unique and longstanding relationship formed part of the inspiration for reviving Aritaware.

The 2016/ project includes 16 collections of contemporary porcelain created by Arita’s local artisans and 16 international designers, hand picked by Yanagihara and Scholten & Baijings. These designers were paired with Arita-based pottery producers, who guided the process.

For the project, Scholten + Baijings designed 27 hand painted dishes, and each piece has its origins in actual historical forms. These styles were superimposed on one another by combining two, or even three outlines, forming complex new shapes, which could only be produced with the help of the latest technology. Supported by the Saga Ceramics Research Laboratory in Arita, Scholten + Baijing’s highly detailed moulds were created using 3D printing and 5Axis CNC milling.

Other 2016/ designers include New York studio Leon Ransmeier, jewellery designer Saskia Diez and her partner industrial designer Stefan Diez, Zurich designers Kueng Caputo, and Christian Haas.

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