Sunday, September 7, 2008

weekend in tokyo

i arrived in tokyo on thursday evening and used the weekend to avoid jetlag for the upcoming shows, do some shopping and catch up with friends [as well as fill up on food i can only find here, like mos burger, basahi etc.]. i really should write a travel guide to tokyo one day, but i'm not sure how accurate it could ever be with things changing so quickly here year to year. so, for now and for this entry, a few highlights and photo-diary.

muji opened a new store in shinjuku on yasukuni-dori, close to my hotel [which is great, as the yurakucho main store is a bit far to go by bicycle with packages]. i spent a half a day there looking at everything [they added the IDEE furniture collection to their larger stores in japan, though the selections is limited due to space], eating in their organic cafe [fiber!], shopping the yohji yamamoto directed muji labo line, and stocking up on bath salts!

i spent saturday at tokyo midtown, the SOM designed mixed-use space in roppongi with my friend and musician of far east music, soichi terada [upper left in collage foto]. we saw an exhibition in the suntory art museum as well as the typography exhibition at the ando designed and issey miyake curated 21_21 design site. the suntory museum always has a great show of japanese art/craft, this time the pre-history of the kimono. i was disappointed with the show at design site this trip though – it came off more like a graphic design exhibition at a university than something becoming of their great space.

soichi and i also had a really authentic mexican meal at la colina in midtown – expensive but delicious. the band was pretty good...can someone identify what the giant 5 string bass guitar is [i've never seen one like that]? i requested "piensa en mi" which they actually knew [i would lose my appetite is i had to listen to "la bamba" one more time].

of course i went to my fave t-shirt shop, graniph. i got stuff for myself, but mostly souvenirs for my staff in NYC. our tokyo office mate, BACH curated the manga collection at the art shop installation/shop at isetan in shinjuku where i went with my friend tomoyo and i bought an overpriced polo shirt [please note: only in japan can you have a "fuck forever" neon sign in a major department store].

i'd list the meals i had if i was writing a food blog. enjoy the pretty pictures.

i love dust, artful dodger, jay-z, beyonce, ashanti + nooka

last tuesday i went out for drinks with mark graham, the creative director of UK-based i love dust, and his creative team after being introduced by my dear friend anya who is an art buyer at the martin agency in richmond virginia. mark and team were in NYC to install a show at the chelsea art museum which happens to be an early and constant supporter of nooka – ah circuitous synergies abound! and over cocktails and beers at temple bar, they offered to do a collab. not next season, or next year, but the next day. and at a speed i've never seen, a few custom painted nookas were displayed next to the customized nikes at the opening invitation only party on friday. jay-z, beyonce, ashanti and their entourages were there, but alas, i was NOT. i was [and still] in tokyo. the nooka studio was there to represent and i have the pleasure of simply blogging about it:)

there was also art by nyc-based vault49 in the dj room [one of which is featured in the foto above]. great stuff jonothan!

we will do more collaborations in the future, until then, enjoy the i love dust website here. i love their work.