Monday, December 03, 2012

Hiroko Takahashi: Lecture on Japanese Design

Our much awaited Hiroko Takahashi Design Lecture! We learned so much from Hiroko-san! Sugoi!
It was three months ago when my fashion designer friend, Dimple Lim invited me to attend the Hiroko Takahashi's Design Lecture sponsored by The Japan Foundation, Manila with her. Of course I agreed, I enjoy those kinds of learning activities. Yeah I'm a geek like that. LOL.

November 24, 2012 ~ Atreyu and Dimple Lim at Hiroko Takahashi's design lecture at the Yuchengco Museum

Hiroko Takahashi is an up-and-coming Japanese artist with international attention, and her works represent a new sensibility in Japanese art and design. Her design background is Textile Design which is very distinctive with her Hirocoledge creations and several design collaborations. Hiroko Takahashi established her own brand, Hirocoledge, in 2006... Her design signature of straight lines and perfect circles are especially crafted by traditional Japanese Artisans using different materials and techniques like "Chusen" (Japanese traditional dyeing method). 

With her creations, she was able to present a beautiful union of modern and traditional Japanese craftsmanship and also stimulate creativity not only with young aspiring designers but everyone who may come to see her work. No wonder she has several design projects, among them are: Hirocoledge (- 100 x 35 Fabrics , Sleeve Bags) that showcases   Hiroko Takahashi's Textile Design Craftsmanship; Hirocoledge & Co. (- Origami Papers, Bed Sheets, Towels, Clothing, etc. with Isetan Living) that expands Hiroko Takahashi's signature patterns to other medium and collaborations with various products; Portrait (-Photos, Exhibit) that Hiroko Takahashi herself models showcasing her creations simulating viewers with non-conventional way of seeing Kimonos; Takahashi Hiroko Base (-design studio and shop)... and few more others like: On Purpose, Words, Textile and many others more! Her craft is truly expanding for more people to appreciate!

Hirocoledge & Co.
On  Purpose

Takahashi Hiroko Base
Shibuya Publishing Bookseller Window Decoration
Collaboration with Mino Japanese Paper's Watermark Collection

Since The Japan Foundation Manila posted about Hiroko Takahashi's Lecture on Japanese Design few months ago, I immediately reserved a slot for my imoutosans and some of my fellow designer friends. I was a bit worried that the design lecture would be too jam packed (... and it was haha) Even if it was a morning lecture 10:00am to 12:00nn, many people were very interested to learn about Hiroko Takahashi.

November 24, 2012 ~ We were not really sure if it was okay to take a photo of this beautiful art installation in the Yuchengco Museum 

I must say that Yuchengco Museum was very accommodating, Ms. Carla Martinez, the Information Officer of the Yuchengco Museum answered all my queries even if I had so many questions here and there. She reserved our slot right away and answered my email inquiries before the event.

November 24, 2012 ~ (One of my sneaky InstaGram posts LOL) "Whaaa so tempted to take photos" — at Yuchengco Museum.

At first we were hesitant that picture taking won't be allowed in the museum... But we were relieved that towards the latter part of the lecture we still got some photos with Hiroko Takahashi!

As seen exactly on photo: Hiroko Takahashi 
I was actually so surprised to see Hiroko Takahashi at sight that she seemed she came out of her posters. At first I thought Hirocoledge hired a quirky and cute model for her brand... But figured out that she's the same person modelling her works when I saw her at sight. I was really impressed how effeortlessly beautiful Hiroko Takahashi is and how she looks how she is on photographs. Beauty nowadays don't often look the same on photographs as it is at sight.
Seeing Hiroko Takahashi at first sight! She's so beautiful! She looks like a doll! (Gomen nasai for the poor quality photo as this was just a zoomed-in stolen shot @_@)
It was quite an inspiring, encouraging and interesting lecture, especially as a young designer. Aside from admiring her trademark prints and patterns and her various projects... Learning about Hiroko Takahashi's ideas made me feel validated as I agree with her ideas too. I'm so amazed how passionate she was about her works and projects. One of the most memorable things I remember her saying was her purpose with her design is her expression of her art and not to sell... because once you sell something, the creation will be devalued and people will only see it's superficial value that hinders people to appreciate the craft. I was really moved with her ideas as an artist... I personally believe every artist should be share this idea... but it's a big challenge to practice one's craft and earn a living and enrich oneself. But hearing another artist speak about it brought me encouragement above-all. 

I was even extra-eager to ask Hiroko-san what was her impression of Filipinos and it was amusing to know her quirky observation, she mentioned about a typical Filipino tricycle driver who was so resourceful by using his t-shirt as an arm-band and a head-scarf to protect him from the sun. May be to us Filipinos, we may find that silly or we may think that tricycle driver just lacks proper gears, but It's so nice to learn what an artist's mind see... I feel proud that she observed "Filipino's Creativity" in our everyday life... through that tricycle driver!
Some of scenes in the Lecture... (Oh BTW, it's so serendypity to see once again the translator of Hiroko-san, as she was also my interviewer's translator during my UNIQLO Job Application  last January 2012!)
The lecture was shortly followed by a Paper Crane Origami Making Session... Which was, mochiron, very interesting to make... especially with Hirocoledge Origami Papers! Hiroko-san demonstrated how to make those beautiful paper cranes!
Hiroko Takahashi demostrating how to make Paper Cranes into a DIY Mobile. It would have been nice to make but I was afraid I migh break it easily after the lecture

I personally love those prints and patterns (As you can see in my previous blog)I think straight lines and perfect circles are so modern and so avant-garde... They made the paper cranes more chic and fashion even more! Modern x Traditional Japanese Art Fusion!
Showing-off our HIROCOLEDGE Paper Cranes! Even Origami Paper Cranes are "designer pieces" haha!
Our work-table making paper cranes!

I think everybody enjoyed making them... even if it was tedious to make for others... Everyone was so concentrated making paper cranes! I was making paper cranes and demonstrating to Atreyu all at the same time... But I'm glad he got to learn in too!

Fashion Designer Friends ~ Dimple Lim & Renan Pacson busy making Paper Cranes!
Dimple Lim, Tracy Dizon and Renan Pacson!

Atreyu proudly shows-off his paper crane origami!
Atreyu and my imoutosans: Liley and Theia showing off their proud works!

It's a fulfilling feeling to have those HIROCOLEDGE Papers made into Paper Cranes... The Hirocoledge print absolutely made those cranes even look more stylish! I even have this Hirocoledge Paper Cranes Photos as my Cover photo (haha)

After the Paper Crane Making Session, we finally got a chance to have some photo-ops with Hiroko Takahashi! Of course, us Filipinos love our photos very much!

Hiroko Takahashi with me, Atreyu, Theia and Liley
Hiroko Takahashi with me and my imoutosans and Renan & Dimple!
Tracy Dizon & Hiroko Takahashi
Renan Pacson & Hiroko Takahashi
Atreyu was so lucky to even have his own photo-op with Hiroko Takahashi

Okay fangirl-mode, I even asked Hiroko-san's Autograph! I know someday that would be a treasure definitely! It's such a pleasure and an honor to meet great artists like her!
Hiroko Takahashi's Autograph!! FANGIRL!
Brought home these loots! Haha! I really thought those "Hiroko Heads" were stickers! It would be a nice sticker though!
Learning about Hiroko Takahashi's Lecture on Japanese Design, I remembered an NHK World interview with a Japanese Social Activist and Director of the MIT Media Lab, Joichi Ito that I've seen few months ago. I remembered him eagerly talking about how COLLABORATIONS would play an important role in our future, and  we should learn to share our knowledge and crafts to let people know our works. Listening to Hiroko Takahashi, I've come to realize that it is indeed gradually happening. Vividly, Hiroko Takahashi even shared her knowledge to fellow Asian Countries as she also went to Singapore, Bangkok, and Chiang Mai (Thailand). I really admire how she maintained her branding and how she's developing and expanding to different medium, not only as "Art" but as well as the "functional" things we use everyday.

As I learned so much from Hiroko Takahashi, I even thought of a "dream-idea"~ that someday may be I can also collaborate with Hirocoledge's perfect circles and straight lines prints for Tiara by Tracy Dizon! That would be such a cool project!

Address:2-K 540 Aki-Oka Artisan, 5-9-18 Ueno, Taito-ku, Tokyo, 110-0005, Japan
Tel. No.: +81362401327
Fax:  +81362401328

Twitter: @hirokotakahashi
Facebook Page

Address:23-F Pacific Star Bldg., Sen. Gil Puyat cor. Makati Ave., Makati City 1226
Tel. No.: +6328116155  +6328116156  +6328116157  +6328116158

Address: RCBC Plaza Corner Ayala and Sen. Gil J. Puyat Avenues, Makati City, 1200, Philippines
Tel: +6328891234
Fax: +6328875144


  1. your photo with her looks amazing dear! matching outfits too! xx

  2. you are so interesting and passionating learner. hiroko takahashi must be amazed with you. and atreyu looks so cute on his pic.

  3. Actually I have never worn kimono or similar.


❤ Thanks for your comments! Sorry, I don't publish ANONYMOUS comments!❤