The 800 Hands Japanese Beauty
The number 800, or yao, is a number that has been used for centuries to signify abundance. For example, a yaoya was a store that sold a lot of products, while the term happyaku hatchou that dates back to the Edo Period referred to the large number of neighbourhoods in Edo, while happyaku hachi bashi referred to the many bridges in the city of Osaka.
The 800 Hands refers to ”the hands of numerous craftsmen”.
Japanese beauty is the by-product of many, many craftsmen’s hands, and craftsmen today continue to create items encapsulating Japanese beauty.
The Zone Concept
Our aim is for visitors to have a truly memorable shopping experience. In order to realize this aim, digital art created by Team Labo and comprising 10 monitors will be installed and laid out in a way that ties in with each of the different corners. The display will enable visitors from countries throughout the world to transcend the language barrier and gain an understanding of Japan’s aesthetics and the nation’s long history.
The content changes to reflect the four seasons, and cutting edge technology has been applied to enable visitors to freely travel between “real space” and the space inside the work. As all shopping purchases are picked up by the purchaser at the departure airport, we have been able to reduce, to a minimum, the number of products on display, instead creating an extraordinary space featuring videos of craftsmen creating their wares, together with scenes of the regions they are based in.
We wanted to be able to make the shopping process like a journey where wonderful memories are created, and the videos of the different regions of Japan where craftsmen are creating their wares represent the start of an inner journey to that place.
We hope that shoppers will discover the many attractions found in different parts of Japan and that these will become part of their actual journey.
The Corner Concept
Japanese quality is defined by certain sensibilities conveyed by words such as “precision”, “carefulness”, “persistence” and “seriousness” and these underpin the culture that has been developed by the Japanese people through the centuries.
On this occasion, four corners have been created in the shop to showcase products symbolizing quality.
- 1 [Tokyo Teshigoto]
- Tokyo Teshigoto is an initiative to introduce the beautiful, meticulous handicraft [teshigoto] of Tokyo to other parts of Japan and overseas
as a way of ensuring that the traditional skills that have been handed down through the generations will continue to be practised into the future.
Through Tokyo Teshigoto, rich and rewarding lifestyles featuring examples of traditional crafts created here in Tokyo are showcased.
- 2 [Good Design Award – Award Winning Products]
- The mission behind the Good Design Award is to enhance the quality of people’s lives through design,
and to create a society where people are able to live more creatively, and reflecting one of the tenets of design - to improve society.
The Good Design Award not only promotes the beauty and potential of good design through a number of different ways,
but also functions to enhance people’s interest and interest in design. The ultimate aim is for a creative ripple effect which can only add to the sense of abundance and richness of society.
(Japan Institute of Design Promotion).
- 3 [Traditional Craft]
- Japan’s traditional culture is the result of the everyday activities of its people, and has been developed over the centuries,
with each cultural aspect reflecting any given period. Our belief is that we, living in these modern times, should integrate the skills that have been handed down
through the generations with modern design to create products reflecting modern living and lifestyles and which will continue to be created in Japan in the future.
- 4 [Industrial Products]
- Monozukuri [skill in making things] is a term that refers to production and manufacturing and is being used with increasing frequency in recent years.
It is, however, a term that also refers to the maker’s mindset or spirit and also to history.
We believe that the mindset and spirit that underpins the quality of the industrial products created by Japanese is no different to that of traditional craft.