August 22, 2013

Japanese packaging has long fascinated us, here in the West. Most of us being unable to read it, the Kunji lettering acts effectively as a bold, almost decorative graphic element. The acid-pastel colouring, too, is often quite foreign to our eyes. All a delight. But then, there’s something about the way the Japanese order the things that surround them that I find truly compelling, too. Packaging, of course, is neatly arranged by colour code and sizes and types on rigorous shelving. But even less symmetrical things are moved into alignment: carts at the market, slabs of sashimi tuna, industrial machinery. It’s so easy to make the mental leap from street to gallery setting. Grids, repetition, mass produced consumer goods – it all looks like pro to-Pop Art!

Author: Nick tobias