INTERVIEW NO. 4
My name is Yuta Takahashi. I’m an art director and designer who works based in Japan offering a wide range of designs including branding, graphic design, package design, editorial design, web design etc. We will use simple and contemporary designs to clarify the identity of the brand and the company and to differentiate strategically. We are offering designs to clients all over the world.
How do you describe your work?
We use smartphones everyday. There are various icons on the screen of the smartphone. For example, in the upper left corner of the screen is a news application, next to it is an application in an art museum, next to it is a publisher, even a design media application, … and so on.
Though these icons are next to each other and fit within our one hand, the news reported according to each media varies.
News reported in avant-garde art media is rarely reported in traditional newspapers. Moreover, contemporary design will not be introduced by fancy design blog. However, the media icons are contained within one hand.
I think this is an interesting phenomenon. In other words, what if you can create a design that exceeds all the barriers of each other? This is the starting point of our idea.
A designer o studio you admire?
When I saw Apple’s iMac, my idea of “design” first budded. That happened when the personal computer I used was broken and went to a neighboring electric store.
There were 20 to 30 PCs in the PC corner, but design was the worst in any of them. I thought, “If there is only the worst-designed personal computer, you do not need a personal computer or the like”.
But suddenly Apple’s iMac appeared just around the corner. It was shocking. When I saw the iMac, I felt a precise thought that was detailed up to the details of the designer. That is my first encounter with “design”.
For these reasons, I am grateful to Jony Ive and Apple’s design team.
Another shocked design is Ohmine Sake bottle designed by Stockholm Design Lab. I think that they abstracted the existing sake bottle design to an artistic level.
Could you tell us about any of your projects?
“Anthroposophische Gesellschaft und Freie Hochschule für Geisteswissenschaft” is a book that discusses the relationship between individuals and society. When we received a request for the design of this book, we thought of designing from the background (landscape), not thinking “let’s design the book”.
When going to a bookstore, many colorful books are lined up (any format, design, color). It is a wonderful design, but many books seem to be passionate about designing the book itself. In other words, I think that few books have been thought about connection and harmony with surrounding environment.
We thought that the reader wanted to buy books and to arrange unified beautiful books when books were stored on the bookshelf at home. In other words, what we wanted to say is not “design of things” but “transition to lifestyle design”.
In this book design our challenge succeeded. And this book was chosen as “Best of 2016” by our favorite design media, Visual Journal.