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A few weeks ago we visited Mono Japan, an event celebrating contemporary Japanese craft and design. Mono japan is also a platform ‘devoted to sophisticated beauty grounded in tradition, enriched with contemporary thinking, and refined to perfection with uncompromising skills’. This year’s theme was ‘Collaboration’, specifically between Japanese and European artists and designers.

Image above: photo exhibit ‘Insular Insights’ by Iwan Baan, presented by WOTH and The Gallery Club. Find out more about the collaborations at Mono Japan 2018: here.

The venue was the wonderful Lloyd hotel in Amsterdam, where exhibitors were situated in the bedrooms and other spaces in the hotel. So special. I’ll share a few of our favorites now:


Sweet Hirado & the Dutch tea ceremony. Well, this is such an amazing story and a whole article in itself: coming to visual strands soon!

Meanwhile, a little peek at the tea ceremony:




On entering the room, the smell of Japanese cedar wood was so calming. These handmade organic shapes by Shimpei Arima are very tactile and everyone was allowed to touch.


Beautiful craftmanship.


It was worth it going up to the attic space to find the handwoven bamboo basket by Studio Shikufusha.



I couldn’t end before showing you the MonoJapan venue: the fabulous Lloyd hotel in Amsterdam. I was enjoying the restored interior so much that I completely forgot to take photos. I’ll definitely be coming back here, such a welcoming atmosphere!


Maybe not very glamorous to share bathroom photos, but this hallway had an unexpected Urban Jungle vibe so I guess I can get away with it this time, right?


Also, the handmade felt shutters (and more) in the Lloyd hotel are by by Claudy Jongstra. I will definitely be staying here in future!