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Sunday, December 03, 2006

Design Festa Vol.24 in Tokyo


Click here for a video of a funk rock band performing at the Tokyo Design Festa

Poster artist at the DesignFesta 2006, Vol.24Today I visited the 24th (called 'Vol.24') of the Tokyo Design Festa. The Design Festa is a two-day extravaganza of 'design' in the very broadest sense of the word, i.e. anything that stimulates the artistic senses. Housed in the massive Big Sight (Tokyo Kokusai Tenjijo) venue in Tokyo's Koto ward, it attracts hundreds of exhibitors from Japan and abroad and tens of thousands of visitors.

Most of the design is of the two-dimensional visual variety with perhaps almost half the stalls featuring posters, postcards, artwork, photography and the like. The rest is a mix of jewelry, sculpture, dolls, clothing, candlemaking, embroidery, music composition, drama, fashion shows and DJing, live performance and more. It is impossible to give most stalls anything but the most cursory glance, honing in only on what ever instantly grabs your eye or ear.

Girls at the Design FestaThe number of exhibitors who had come to Japan only for the DesignFesta spoke volumes about the reputation the event has. I talked to designers from Taiwan, a photographer from the Republic of Korea and an art agent from Germany who was exhibiting artworks from India, Thailand and elsewhere.In equal proportion to the variety on display was the vitality in the air. This was a vast hall full of people who had poured their all into what they were displaying and selling, and the atmosphere was one of connectedness, enthusiasm, friendliness and downright excitement.The musical performances especially conveyed this vigor. A mainly-women drumming team entranced the crowd with its exuberance, and a three-member funk rock band belted it out like their was no tomorrow. Clicking the link at the top for a short video of the funk rock band.

Design Festa, Vol.24 The Design Festa happens twice a year. The next one is on May 26 (Sat) and May 27 (Sun) at the same venue: Tokyo Big Sight, West Hall, 1, 2, 3, 4, Atrium and Outdoor.

DesignFesta Vol#23

DesignFesta band.
The Design Festa goes further than the famous twice-a-year exhibition, however. It is based on the Design Festa Gallery in Harajuku. (3-20-18 1st and 2nd floor, Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0011. Check out the Design Festa Gallery website. And don't miss the next Design Festa in May of next year!

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