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LZF’s kindred spirit with Japanese craft and design

November 28, 2019 4:13 pm Published by

LZF recently hosted a group of Japanese visitors at our showroom in Valencia. If there is one thing we enjoy at LZF, it’s welcoming guests from across the world. Surrounded by our lighting collections, and with food, drink and good conversation, we said a big ‘kon’nichiwa’ in the LZF way.

Our Japanese guests at the LZF showroom.

Japanese culture is fascinating, perplexing and multifaceted, steeped in tradition and entirely modern. Wherever you happen to be in Japan, you will find beauty and grace in simple things. From bowing to taking off one’s shoes, such acts are unfeigned, respectful and never demeaning. In Japan, you feel and see the sense of pride that people take in everything they do. There is an emphasis on perfection, but it is subtle, quiet and rarely laboured. In fact the notion of ‘perfection’ may best fit a Western perspective on the Japanese approach to life. From a Japanese perspective, a better way to describe this approach is one based on ‘authenticity’ and ‘simplicity’. 

One particular LZF lamp—the Chou—was inspired by Chouchin, the Japanese name for a simple, traditional paper lantern. In Japan, you will often find Chouchin hanging at the entrance to a temple or restaurant. As an extrapolation from the traditional paper Chouchin, the Chou—designed by Yonoh—showcases the folding and overlapping of wood veneer. Authentic and simple, the Chou finds harmony with Japanese design.

Chou Tall and Chou Short.

Mini Chou. Photo by Pablo Fuentes for LZF.

Traditional Chouchin in a Tokyo alley. Photo by Denys Nevozhai on Unsplash.

Another LZF creation, the majestic and ethereal Koi, captures our long-standing respect for the Japanese aesthetic. In Japan, the koi is the country’s national fish and is much respected and symbolic—it is thought to represent luck, prosperity and good fortune.

Koi. Designed by Inocuo The Sign and LZF Lab.

Preparing sushi at LZF’s HQ.

Japan’s designers and artisans approach their work with vigour, placing an emphasis on authenticity, craftsmanship and innovation. Centuries of tradition, and a particular reverence for nature, are woven into many facets of Japanese design. Natural, organic materials—wood, stone, ceramic, metal, paper and textiles—are used across all design disciplines. Most importantly, these materials are treated with the utmost respect.

Here at LZF, we find a kindred spirit with Japanese craft and design. Our handmade wood veneer lamps are a physical expression of everything that we stand for. We are mindful of efficiency and sustainability, of innovation and longevity in design. We prize the tactile quality, versatility and aesthetic value of each and every lamp. Spending time with our Japanese guests, there was clearly a shared understanding of and a mutual respect for the artisanal nature of our products. Our guests were as enthralled by our wood veneer lamps as we would be if we visited a traditional paper lantern factory in Japan. Going forward, LZF’s aspiration is to grow within the Japanese marketplace, where we find a special appreciation for artisanship and products made using wood. 

Some images from the event:

LZF co-founder Mariví Calvo (centre).

LZF co-founder Sandro Tothill (second from right).

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