Located in the second floor of the art complex where SferaBuilding consist of six sections of five floors, the exhibition space, SferaExhibition is a cultural platform for architecture, design and art in any medium.
We will be welcoming to the Kansai area for the first time, Thonik alphabets @ sfera kyoto by Thonik – a design studio based in Holland.
Thonik was founded in Amsterdam by Nikki Gonnissen and Thomas Widershoven in 1993.
Thonik has an impressively wide array of projects in its portfolio, having taken on the visual communications for major museums of the Netherlands – such as the Museum Boijmans van Beuningen (Rotterdam) and the Centraal Museum (Utrecht) – as well as for the 11th Venice Biennial, and political campaign of the Dutch Socialist Party.
Delicate, but simultaneously bold and experimental, Thonik’s visual communications have been held in high international repute, placing them firmly among studios representing the Netherlands.
For their first exhibit in the Kansai region, Thonik treats us to a new graphic textile series that has been produced exclusively for the Thonik alphabets @ sfera kyoto.
(Sat) March 3 – (Sun) April 1, 2012
11:00-20:00 / Closed on Wednesdays / Free entry
Venue : SferaExhibition (2F SferaBuilding)
LeLecture by Thonik(Thomas Widdershoven)
(Sat) March 3
Open 15:30 / Start 16:00 (-18:00)
Admission 500yen / Reservation only
Tel 075 532 1105
(Sat) March 3
18:00 -20:00 / Free entry / No reservation required
In 2008 thonik was invited to do a show in the Shanghai Art Museum. It made them rethink the possibilities and problems of showing graphic design in a museum. Thonik decided to produce an installation of 16 woolen carpets with their designs. The carpets were handmade in China, thus thonik interacted with local craftmanship. The carpets were monumental. They were warm to touch, they slowed down the visitors pace and they were strong in presence. At the same time the carpets are nomadic: you can role them up and the carpets in fact traveled the world to the Venice biennale, Spiral in Tokyo, Droog in New York and the Moti in Breda (Netherlands).
For the show in Sfera, Kyoto, thonik wanted to react to the first impression Nikki and Thomas had when visiting the Sfera shop in Tokyo. Noriko Kawakami took them there. It made a great impression. The atmosphere is modern, but the quality of the craftmanship is timeless in a classic way.
For the exhibition at Sfera Kyoto the carpets were too crude. Thonik tried to find a way to transform the carpet concept to a more sophisticated materialisation. Nikki and Thomas connected to the textile lab in Tilburg (Netherlands) to experiment with traditional and modern weaving techniques, trying to find results that are graphic and strong, but also appealing to the Japanese sensetivity. As a motiv thonik choose 8 alphabets they designed for various clients over the last ten years. The alphabet is in the western tradition a symbol of ‘everything that can be said’. It is a symbol of potential: the potential to form words and meaning. The alphabet stands for all words and non-words, combinations of letters that do not mean anything in a language. In this way the installation at Sfera connects to Thonik’s ‘four letr word’ installation at the SFMoma, where all 5.000 english four letter words were combined with random 5.000 four letter nonsense ‘words’.
SferaBuilding 2F, 17 Benzaiten-cho,
Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto JAPAN 605-0086
Tel. +81(0)75 532 1139
Fax. +81(0)75 532 1121
Open from 11:00 to 20:00
Closed on Wednesdays
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