Japan was once known as “the land of the rising sun.” Taiyo is a lighting fixture that, through form, expresses the moment when the sun, a symbol of the Shinto worship of the Japanese, rises above the horizon and separates from the surface of the water.
Among the implements of illumination handed down in Japan from long ago are lanterns made from bamboo strips and Japanese washi paper. These can be carried with a lit candle or folded away compactly when not in use. We have created a lighting fixture made by craftsmen of the Suifu lanterns made for about 400 years in Mito, Ibaraki Prefecture, and using Sekishu washi from Shimane Prefecture, a tradition handed down for 1,300 years.
Suifu lanterns are made in one of a few producing areas that carry forward old-fashioned handmade manufacturing methods using bamboo strips and washi. Doing so creates shadows from uniformly thin and beautiful strips, but bamboo strips lend an expression to the shadows they throw, creating a soft impression for the lantern as a whole.
Sekishu washi is made in the only place where its source material, kozo pulp, is cultivated in the same area. This washi has an ecru colour that comes from the use of kozo pulp complete with the endocarp, and is also characterized by its strength.
It is thanks to the robust construction of Suifu lanterns and to Sekishu washi, that we were able to create such a large paper lantern. The modeling of light born of natural materials and Japanese tradition illuminates modern spaces and gives rise to richly expressive scenes.