In this series lead by creative director Takayuki Minami, he introduces the next generation artists bridging craft and art together under the theme ‘Japanese aesthetics’. As a part two of this series, Minami introduces Go Koyama, an artisan woodworker. Work shown: wood wall art.
Minami’s take on Koyama’s work: “Koyama has his atelier in Karuizawa now, but originally he was making furniture and chairs. He also trained as a woodworker and studied under his professor before becoming active as an independent artist. He started off by making wooden plates and other functional household objects.
When I met him, he had an exhibition at Playmountain EAST in San Francisco. His woodworks are fantastic, of course, but what was truly outstanding was the way in which he handled the space to show his work. It was so unique and artistic.
The most iconic pieces of Koyama are the single flower base and the wooden wheel, but this time he made a wooden wall piece for this series. I love how the piece is so simple and minimal, simply to be hung on a wall; yet captures the characteristics of black persimmon wood with wormholes so beautifully. I’m also attracted to his attitude of not showing off his technical skills, although he is. Skilled wood craftsmen usually tend to want to only create functional things, but Koyama is different. There are not so many artists out there capable to creating space, while working sculpturally. I think it requires a different kind of talent than being a wood craftsman, in order to produce space. How art pieces are displayed, I believe, is just as important as the art itself and should be regarded as a part of it. In this regard too, I think Koyama is a great talent.“
A creative director of Hibiya Central Market which has been running since March 2018 and his own brand, Graphpaper. He is involved in multiple shop direction and branding. Highly respected for his understanding of aesthetics in the industry.
An artisan woodworker. Born 1983 in Niigata. Koyama apprenticed with fellow woodworker Shinichiro Tani in 2004. Five and a half years later, he set up his independent atelier in Karuizawa. Since his first solo exhibition in 2013 at Nishiazabu R in Tokyo, he has been showing his work in and outside of Japan, perpetually crossing the divide between art and craft.
|Select Takayuki Minami||Photo Masayuki Nakaya||Translation Akiko Watanabe|