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Sunday, November 04, 2007

100% Design Tokyo

100%デザイン東京

Today was the last day of Tokyo Designer's Week 2007, an event running from October 31 to November 4th that enveloped the whole of Tokyo and saw business, local government, and academia collaborating. Its reach went beyond the domestic, even, and involved hundreds of overseas design-related companies and individuals.

The centerpiece of the week was the big exhibition, 100% Design Tokyo, that took place on the grounds of the Meiji Jingu Mae Art Gallery, staged mainly in a series of massive white tents.

The sun was shining in an almost cloudless blue sky as we lined up for entry which, at 2,000 yen, turned out to be well worth it in both fun, gasp-factor, and the chance to meet people.

The tent nearest the entrance, Blickfang, featured design work from Europe, mainly Germany. It was every bit as chic and imaginative as you would expect. The Czech glass was probably the most impressive in its perfection, simplicity, and unerring modernity.

The Japan Brand Exhibition was a bit of a come down after Blickfang, with its predictable "Japonesque" themery and a lot of lacklustre products.

The main tent was a pot pourri of design products from all over the world, and took a good hour to get around.

Outside was an enormous raised platform featuring university students' design concepts on top: a very "experimental" collection full of hits and misses, and, underneath it, rows of shipping containers each featuring a different design concept.

Tokyo Designer's Week, by the way, is not to be confused with the Design Festa, which is a more local, amateur event.

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