Blurring the lines in design with Japanese Artist Rikako Nagashima

Rikako Nagashima is one of Japan’s most exciting and important creatives. As an artist, designer and photographer, she is known for blurring the lines between graphic design, fashion and contemporary art. With her company Village®, Rikako works from a beautiful, cosy space full of light and plants which used to be an Olympic athletes village in Tokyo. Here, she creates branding, CI, VI, product and packaging design, editorial and art direction solutions for some pretty enormous and great Japanese brands.

Despite her high profile clients, who range from LaForet to Issey Miyake to Zucca, Rikako always manages to keep things humble. She favours using natural objects and handmade processes to create the work, which always manages to transcend the typical slick, shiny “commercial” outcome. The recurrence of nature and the handmade possibly extends from her upbringing in “very rural” Japan. Rikako has spoken about occupying herself with drawing and making things to break the boredom of quiet country life, and as she grew up this tendency naturally progressed to an interest in design.

In an interview with Drop Magazine, she said, “the design world is pretty closely tied to the economy. But I don’t like my work to be something that contributes solely to moving the economy. I believe that design should be able to make the invisible visible, which is something that I want to work on more.”

In every project, the Rikako’s aim is to make something that is inherently beautiful for what it is. The originality and beauty in her work is the manifestation of her desire to escape creating something that anyone else can do. Her work comes from the heart and from her hands, and the results are mesmerising, unique, highly original and something that could only come from the world of Japanese artist Rikako Nagashima.

See more from Japanese artist Rikako Nagashima on her website.

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