inga sempé: koubei gama ceramics for japan creative
inga sempé: koubei gama ceramics for japan creative inga sempé: koubei gama ceramics for japan creative
may 01, 2012

inga sempé: koubei gama ceramics for japan creative

‘koubei-gama’ ceramics by inga sempé for japan collective
image © designboom

koubei-gama is a certified manufacturer founded in 1804 by the first koubei kato (master), supplying painted ceramic dishes to the edo castle in japan.
the company has a long history of preserving the tradition of oribe ware – a style of japanese pottery characterized by its distinctive green glazes –
while always embracing innovative changes.

as part of the japan creative initiative, koubei-gama has collaborated with french designer inga sempé on a family of ceramic containers.
known for creating products which are humorous and reflect a keen color sense, the craftsmanship of the japanese artisans who create the products
using simple designs utilizing years of experience and intricate skills intrigued sempé. in this body of work, composed of plates, bowls, cups etc. 
the has subtly applied her graphic and pop sense to the pieces so that they blend well with the mysterious color shades of oribe ceramics.

currently the seventh koubei kato along with his son ryotaro kato continue to run koubei-gama. they work with more than 20 skilled artisans
committed to continuing the traditions of high quality japanese pottery with graceful designs.

image courtesy of inga sempé

japan creative is an initiative which has been developed to promote and rediscover the distinguished aesthetics and tradition-oriented skills
of the japanese in today’s modern world. the organization’s aim is to create and present ideas and products from a new perspective–
more specifically to provide information to the public domestically and internationally by working across a wide variety of fields from
lighting to furniture, ceramics to technology. during milan design week 2012, they presented ‘simple vision’, an exhibition held within museo minguzzi
expressing japan’s craftsmanship and the wisdom of past generations in a contemporary context through collaborations they have made
with international designers as a means of getting individuals to rethink and redefine the role of design in our lives.

image © designboom

image courtesy of inga sempé

image © designboom

presentation of inga sempé’s koubei-gama container family for japan creative on show during milan design week 2012 at museo minguzzi

image © designboom

alternative perspective
image © designboom

installation view of inga sempé’s work for japan creative
image courtesy of inga sempé

production of traditional japanese pottery
images courtesy of japan creative

each ceramic piece is hand painted
images courtesy of japan creative

images courtesy of japan creative

a look at the distinctive green glazes of oribe ware
image courtesy of inga sempé

finished pieces of inga sempé’s
‘koubei-gama’ ceramics at the factory
image courtesy of inga sempé

fired pottery works at the koubei-gama factory
image courtesy of inga sempé

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