A great place to browse if you’re ever looking for inspiration are the association pages, or those craft collectives that point out specific makers from the area in question. With my interest being Japanese art and design it made sense to search through different locations to see what was on offer. Most prefectures usually have some sort of website that highlights craftsmen in the local area, it’s just a matter of finding them as they’re often tucked away. One that I bumped in to myself was the Okayama arts association website that represents a tight knit group of makers, all specialising in the production of everyday ordinary and utilitarian objects. One that really interested me was Lue Kikuchi, who also goes under the synonym Lue or Lue Brass, his cutlery is absolutely spectacular.
Lue makes utensils and accessories out of brass in the Japanese city of Setouchi. Much like fellow Japanese metalworker Rieko Fujimoto, who we happen to stock in the shop, Lue makes objects that cooperate with the lives of ordinary people. Hoping that every time one of his items is picked up and used it brings great pleasure and will last for many years. Although he makes all his works by hand, he has recently started to explore the production of industrial metalwork, cutlery that is made by workshop machinery. He hopes that he can push his craft to more people with this option, using top quality metal and interesting design solutions, for example one flat piece of brass punched with a single mould.
This specific post today pinpoints his handcrafted works, but I’d urge you towards his website to check out the industrial cutlery and the other photos similar to this. Lue’s website is very nice and shows his work in a contemporary setting, which unfortunately isn’t always the case on most makers websites. Hopefully we’ll see more from Lue in the future and maybe a representation over here in Europe. Enjoy.