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 Mio Yamada

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Mio Yamada
A freelance arts and lifestyle editor and writer, Mio Yamada focuses on design, crafts and architecture. When she’s not visiting galleries and trade fairs, you'll find her taking photos of everything and being distracted by shiny objects. She's also surprisingly British.
Designed by architect Akira Watanabe, Numazu Club’s villa rooms offer views of a tranquil pebble-lined shallow pool that draws clear spring water from Fuji River.
LIFE / Travel
May 25, 2024
Meditation as architecture at a Shizuoka teahouse turned villa
Whether you meditate by the crystal-clear pool or enjoy a dip in a "hinoki" bath, you're bound to appreciate Numazu Club's original vision: a sanctuary from modern life.
The colored patterns of Tsuguru "nuri," made in Aomori Prefecture, are achieved by applying multiple coatings of lacquer, which are later polished down to reveal layers of colors beneath.
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
May 18, 2024
A new initiative rethinks old Tohoku crafts
Described as “collector's items,” the works are being kept under wraps until their debut at a May 24-25 exhibition at Kudan House in Tokyo’s Chiyoda Ward.
A view of Matazo Kayama’s folding screen paintings reproduced on ceramic panels by Otsuka Ohmi Ceramics, displayed at Simose Art Museum.
CULTURE / Art
May 11, 2024
Art and architecture come together at Simose Art Museum
Tradition and innovation converge at Shimose Art Museum. For it first anniversary, the venue is spotlighting trailblazer nihonga artist Matazo Kayama.
Adal’s Look into Nature brand, on show at Salon del Mobile 2024, rethinks "igusa" (Japanese rush grass), traditionally used for tatami, as a sustainable material for furniture.
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
Apr 13, 2024
Japan’s best and brightest designers set to shine in Milan
The Salone del Mobile trade fair and its accompanying SaloneSatellite exhibition of up-and-coming talent attracts a pool of talented Japanese designers.
Made by Karimoku, Keiji Ashikawa’s design of the JAL Boeing 777 cabin window stool uses an outer window pane from the plane as a transparent seat set on a base comprising recycled oak off-cuts.
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
Mar 16, 2024
Recycling old JAL planes and bullet trains into design treasures
This month, On: Design looks at recycled products designed to rev the engines of plane and train enthusiasts.
An in-house design by Yamagiwa, the Sui drop-shaped light uses traditional Japanese chōchin lantern techniques and is made with Mino washi paper.
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
Feb 17, 2024
Japan-made standouts from one of Paris' biggest design fairs
Maison & Objet is now such a popular event that it is often nicknamed the Paris Fashion Week of the interior design industry.
The Instant House's pointed roof prevents snow accumulation, while a side slot allows power cables to be pushed inside for lighting and heaters.
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
Jan 27, 2024
Innovative designs contribute to earthquake disaster relief
Smartly designed products can't solve all of the Noto Peninsula's post-quake problems, but they might be able to help.
Kyoji’s Ma_do Fragments Wall Art collection of stainless steel frames, designed by Katsuyama Motonori, features off-cuts and other objects selected from Kyoji’s collaborating craftspeople.
LIFE / Style & Design
Nov 18, 2023
Off-the-wall designs to spruce up your home or office
On: Design looks at some products that can bring new life to bare walls.
Gala Espel’s “Archeology of the Future” fuses digital technology with handcraftsmanship to create silverware and jewelry of industrial forms and natural motifs.
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
Oct 17, 2023
Designart’s young creators foreshadow the future
On: Design this month focuses on the work of five creators selected by Designart judges for its 2023 Under 30 program.
Mysteriously suspended on the water of the Fugan Canal in Kansui Park, Hiroko Kubo’s “Mountain Dogs” (2023) are made from materials that reflect the industries of Toyama.
CULTURE / Art
Oct 7, 2023
An introspective Go For Kogei turns its attention to Toyama
The craft-art festival focuses on the historically industrial city to explore the Hokuriku region's crafts in an urban setting.
The Materials Provided by Mizuno Baseball Bat Tableware set is made from a recycled, discarded baseball bat and includes two large tumblers, a vase, a small cup, four cutlery rests and a sake cup.
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
Sep 30, 2023
Game-changing designs from sporting goods brands
On: Design looks at two major Japanese sporting goods companies that have launched unique SDG-inspired projects.
Designed by Sadamaranai Obake, Kumomonaka is a wagashi (traditional Japanese confectionery) kit that encourages those in mourning to talk about the past while creating sweets in colors that remind them of their deceased loved ones.
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
Aug 26, 2023
Japan-made novelties with deeper purpose
The easiest way to understand Japanese cultural concepts might be through these smartly designed products.
The Cards series of aluminum statement earrings, designed by Kanako Matsuo and manufactured by Marushin Industrial Co. Ltd’s in-house brand Alart, each comprise five pieces that can be hung on loops in any combination.
LIFE / Style & Design
Jul 22, 2023
Summer is the season of playful design debuts
June's Interior Lifestyle Tokyo international trade fair was filled with objects designed to spark a little joy in life.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Art
Jul 15, 2023
Tennoz Isle: Tokyo’s new contemporary art hub
The goal of making Tennoz Isle a vital art hub is closely tied to opening up the Japanese art market. With plans for artist residencies and business expansion, the bayside area's future is bright.
Japan Times
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
Jun 17, 2023
Japan’s young creators go to the mat for the tatami industry
This month, On: Design looks at a few innovations designed to recycle tatami waste and help revitalize the waning industry.
Japan Times
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
May 20, 2023
Japan’s head start on designer bicycle helmets
Despite protective headgear being compulsory for children since 2008, there are surprisingly few bicycle helmet producers in Japan.
Japan Times
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
Apr 16, 2023
Japan springs into action for Salone del Mobile Milan 2023
The world’s largest annual furniture and design trade fair is back in full force, and Japanese designers are well represented.
Japan Times
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
Mar 18, 2023
Celebrate spring with fresh furniture ideas from Japan
Recycled cabinets, artful sculptures and multipurpose workstations to spruce up your home.
Japan Times
LIFE / Style & Design / ON: DESIGN
Feb 18, 2023
Japan’s award-winning travel goods make any trip a breeze
Don't even think about leaving home without these mindfully produced travel essentials.
Japan Times
LIFE / Style & Design
Jan 21, 2023
Japanese designers begin the year with responsible and eco-friendly products
This month: a breathing pillow, a hard hat made from scallops and chairs from master architect, Kengo Kuma.

Longform

Father's Day is said to have come to Japan around 1950, shortly after the establishment of Mother's Day.
The evolving nature of fatherhood in Japan