Astia-Utsuwa exhibition, ©Yuka Takahashi


Finnish and Japanese dining experience

21-24 September 2005,

Helsinki Design Week
Cable Factory, Puristamo Hall, Helsinki

Globalization and locality are contemporary topics.
Understanding cultural differences and bringing one’s own idea into local needs are important issues for designers.
This exhibition “Astia-Utsuwa” shows three sets of different dining suites designed through “TABLEWARE DESIGN PROJECT derived from Finnish and Japanese eating culture” and carried out at the University of Art and Design Helsinki UIAH in Spring-Summer 2005. Does a design process with cultural exchange study create interesting results?
Three working group units have studied Finnish and Japanese culture especially in the area of serving and consuming meals through a series of intensive workshop sessions. The first of these units is comprised of Finnish students: Susanna Hoikkala, Tanja Sipilä and Marjaana Yläjääski, the second of Japanese students: Nao Saito, Satoko Taguma and Midori Yamada, and the third of the project planner and leader, Yuka Takahashi. Designers have different background such as applied art and design, architectural study, industrial design, spatial and furniture design. This project is one part of Yuka Takahashi’s diploma work of Industrial and strategic design Ma program at the University of Art and Design Helsinki UIAH supervised by a significant Finnish designer and artist Stefan Lindfors.
The teams of Finnish students and Japanese students created sets of artefacts relating to the dining environments of their reciprocal cultures. Yuka Takahashi created a set of artefacts as integrations of Japanese and Finnish cultures.
The task was given as “table and tableware for four people in an everyday environment.” The title “ASTIA-UTSUWA” is a coined expression of “vessel” in “Finnish-Japanese”.