Our Yanagi Sori armchair (YD261A) and Hara Kenya tatamiza (KH250) have recently been accepted into the permanent collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) in London. The Yanagi armchair was put on display in the V&A’s newly renovated Toshiba Gallery of Japanese Art at the end of November 2017. The Hara tatamiza will be exhibited in a future display.
With a collection of over 4.5 million objects, the V&A is the world’s largest museum of decorative art and design. It was founded in 1852 and named after Queen Victoria and her husband Prince Albert.
Dr. Rupert Faulkner, Senior Curator of Japanese Art in the V&A’s Asian Department, has kindly commented on this acquisition as below.
Hara Kenya’s tatamiza (2008) is something I have longed to have in the collection ever since seeing it illustrated some years ago. The workmanship with which its wonderfully fluid shape is rendered is remarkable. It is strikingly modern and yet references historical furniture types in a subtle and compelling way. It is also a very good example of a zaisu with which we will be able to tell visitors not familiar with Japan about its long tradition of sitting on the floor.
The Yanagi Sori armchair is a fine example of how this celebrated designer applied his distinctive aesthetic to the creation of western style furniture. It adds an important dimension to the V&A’s small but growing collection of classic products by leading Japanese designers active from the 1950s onwards.