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A Designed Life | Japan


Art, craft and design permeate every aspect of life in Japan. From simple daily chores to elaborate ceremonies, careful thought and refined skills have gone into the aesthetics and functionality of the objects and experiences of day-to-day existence. 


At its core is empathy, respect and spirituality, and a deep awareness of our human needs. These values are experienced in daily life through ritual, connection to nature, and the importance of harmony. These elements make up a Japanese philosophy of design that connects human beings to each other and the objects they use. 


A Designed Life | Japan takes a closer look at this philosophy, and how Japanese creatives integrate material, process and craftsmanship to connect to our senses and emotions, creating a more meaningful life. 


We ask how might this ‘designed life’ serve as an inspiration for our own lives? What values and customs do we find in Japan that might help us to better design our own lives to be more mindful and considered?


Could we creatively tackle contemporary issues of mass-consumption, environmental sustainability, and wellbeing, by delving into one of the world’s most well-loved artistic cultures?


Welcome to ‘A Designed Life | Japan’


About The Creators

A Designed Life | Japan is a new online publishing project by curator Kathryn Hunyor and designer Rina Bernabei. Both acclaimed in their respective fields, their work over 25 years spans public lectures, art and design exhibitions, participatory art, lighting, furnishings, and interior design.


Since 2021 they have come together to share their insights into Japanese art, craft and design, developed over more than three decades engaging with Japan. Combining academic inquiry with real-world practice, their unique perspective and contagious enthusiasm gives others an opportunity to reflect on their daily rituals and connection to their environment.

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