Arita Porcelain Lab’s stackable Bonbonnière container series and pendant lamp are expressions of the traditional kissho style, rendering the spiritual aspect of nature’s earthly presence in vivid graphics, distilled to a cool contemporary palette and crafted into forms that first startle, then suddenly make eminent sense, coming from one of the most progressive design studios in Japan today.
It isn’t uncommon for businesses in Japan to be led by a single family for hundreds of years. Some societies are better at torch-passing than others, and it helped that Japan was closed until the late 1800s But when it slowly opened to the world, Arita Porcelain Lab charged forward.
Reestablishing authority throughout the 20th century in the traditional Ko-Imari style, rich in gold and detailed chinoiserie, it later stormed Paris, cradle of design culture, where its presence in the monumental Maison et Objet fair and collaborations with major European design houses made it central to the conversation.
Then it was on to the U.S. where, in 2010, renowned chef and restaurateur David Bouley put the popular “Japan Series” tableware in the sightline of New York’s influential tastemakers. The series went to the 2011 NY Restaurant show, and from there Arita Porcelain Lab made waves on every shore of the design world: SF MoMA, Martha Stewart, the Chilewich catalogue, Jonathan Adler, and on, a torch from the past illuminating design’s path forward.