This month, a new initiative aimed at revitalizing Japanese crafts launches in Tokyo with a showcase of collaborations between international designers and regional industries. Craft x Tech — spearheaded by Hideki Yoshimoto, founder of the engineering design studio Tangent — focuses on the versatility of traditional crafts and their potential to evolve with innovative design and advanced technology.

For its inaugural project, which is directed by independent design curator Maria Cristina Didero, Craft x Tech invited creators to team up with artisans in each of Tohoku’s six prefectures. The resulting works, described by the initiative as “collector's items,” are being kept under wraps until their debut at a May 24-25 exhibition at Kudan House in Tokyo’s Chiyoda Ward. Judging by the list of internationally acclaimed designers and artists, however, the pieces are sure to be unconventional interpretations of Tohoku’s varied traditional crafts, which range from textiles and woodwork to ceramics and cast iron.