What an exciting week! We received the printed copies of Mjolk Volume II, and I’m always so amazed at how good the photos look after being printed. Photographs must long to be printed because there is just something that doesn’t translate to screen viewing.
After grabbing a copy for ourselves, it is a ritual for us to go over the entire book as if we are reading it for the first time. Of course we have read the book over and over, but there is something about turning the pages of the finished version that is like experiencing the book for the first time, and getting into the head space of a new reader.
There are some notable changes, we went from around 104 pages in our first book to a whopping 144 pages in the second. Of course we are still advert free, so it’s 144 pages of pure content. We’ve also learned a lot from the first book, and know what we liked and what we didn’t like. Based on these decisions we decided to focus on editorial content only, shifting from a magazine / catalog hybrid to a proper book. Last but not least I think the overall voice is clearer, as this time we set out to do the interviews and photographs while the first time was more of a mosaic from our personal travel photos.
We’ve started sending our books to our faithful stockists already, so if you’re in a city and want to get a copy of the new issue we appreciate you being patient to support your local retailers. If we’re not carried in your city yet (and there’s a good chance that we aren’t) please let your local book or special interest shop know! We’ve been picked up numerous times because of customers who wanted to buy it locally.
Above: The Nakashima article, with a tour of the Nakashima studio and houses complemented by an interview with Mira Nakashima. The Nakashima exhibit at Mjölk is July 24 (runs for about a month). Mira Nakashima will be in attendance.
The cover which is the entrance to wood artisan Tomii Takashi’s home. I hope to introduce you all to Tomii when he visits us next week on Wednesday, June 26th, for his first solo exhibition in North America!
To pick up a copy of Mjölk Volume II, visit our webshop or come into the store!
Last Thursday I went with Emily Tu, our book designer, to the press approval for Mjölk Volume 2. It was my first time going (John went last time) and I got to see what a big job printing these books is.
We get it printed at Warren’s Waterless Waterless Printing, thanks to our friends over at Pure Green Magazine, who suggested it. We like that it’s printed locally, so that we can see the paper, process, and proofs, plus they are environmentally responsible. All that AND they are the same price as others quoted (in Toronto).
Above we discuss the proofs, which are unfortunately on coated paper, which makes it tricky to tell exactly how it will be on our paper stock. This is unfortunately industry standard and the paper manufacturer has no ambition to offer an uncoated proofing paper.
The aluminum plates (our book had about 9). The plates are etched directly from the computer, so there are actually images and type all over the green, but because the ink hasn’t touched it yet you cannot see it. Where you see the black writing is where Dave, the production manager, put a felt tip marker to it.
After approving the cover, they ran it. On the left is the black plate. On the right is the stack of covers.
The press, plus the black and blue plate. Each of the three colours and black have their own plate.
Running some recycled paper through to prime the press.
Removing a page from the press.
Then the technician places it on a table where the colour bands along the side get analyzed by a computer (left), then transfers the paper to another table where they can make adjustments to how much ink is distributed along each plate (right).
This was pretty impressive, as a lot of decisions have to be made here. Of course it’s nice for a client to sign off on all pages, but we weren’t able to hang out until 3am!
The ubiquitous calendar / clock (that isn’t a clock) shop shot.
Thank you to Dave who took the time to show us around!
Mjölk Volume 2 is arriving this afternoon, just in time since we have sold out of Volume 1!
On their last night staying with us, Kazumi Tsuji cooked dinner. Kazumi lived in San Francisco so her cooking is a mash up between Japanese, American, and Italian.
We used a mish mash of tableware: Teema (for some reason we only own four cereal bowls, but there were six of us), beautiful lacquer bowls bought from Sabita in Sapporo on our honeymoon, Kazumi Tsuji glasses, Masanobu Ando plates…Japanese cooking is all about the small and many plates, so it’s fun to get to use an assortment of beautiful pieces in one sitting.
It was such a treat to have Kazumi cook for us!
When Norihiko visited us in April he spent two days creating a beautiful window display for his exhibition “My Garden”. Since the results were so inspiring, he suggested that we frame it.
Ok, so I am no videographer (Kings of Convenience served as a lovely soundtrack, but of course that’s a no no). John just pointed out to me that videos are usually taken on the panoramic. Yup, makes sense! Anyway, the point of this quick video is to show how methodical Norihiko was with his process. He would select the pieces according to the spacing, and then use a little table brush to keep the floor clean before continuing. Two days on his hands and knees and a lot of coffee!
A few weeks ago we met Peter & Elizabeth Porebski, who have a professional framing business The Gilder, and got to talking with them. They came up with a plan and a few days ago we set about the task of transferring every little piece to two 4′ x 8′ canvases. We selected a nice Japanese washi paper to serve as the background.
We used our iphones to photograph placement.
A pizza break and then back to it!
Then Peter & Elizabeth came to the shop with prepared frames and we hung them just in time for Kazumi’s show. They will be on semi-permanent display – one day they’ll probably make their way into our home but for now they will be in the shop for all to enjoy!
On Thursday we hosted a solo exhibition of Kanazawa based glass artist Kazumi Tsuji. We were particularly excited about this exhibition because we had just met up with Kazumi in Japan the month before, and also spent the last 4 weeks putting the finishing touches on Mjölk Volume II, which Kazumi has a large feature in. So we were definitely in Kazumi-mode in the weeks leading up to the exhibition. By the way, our second book is at the printers as we speak. More on that later!
If you are not familiar with Kazumi Tsuji’s work, or the show in general here is a little summary. Kazumi’s special glasses are a collection of clear mouth-blown glass with a thin delicate layer of black/purple glass on top. Kazumi then cuts patterns into the thin black glass to reveal the clear glass beneath it.
Along with her notable clear and black glasses, we were also showing special blue glasses during the exhibition. These are very special because they are the result of a years worth of broken glass from Kazumi’s studio. The discarded glass is collected and melted down, the result was a surprise – an incredibly rich blue glass! These are the unique and signed works only available during this exhibition.
Above: Our Studio Junction crafted tea carts holding unique glass bottles and funnels made for the exhibition.
The clear air pitcher holding some flowers.
Our black bookcase with black glassware.
Very special large bowls with various cut and etched patterns.
The collection of “Reclaimed blue” glasses on an oak table by Børge Mogensen.
Triangle shaped bowls.
Decal by Sali Tabacchi.
These two are the cutest, aren’t they? Friend of the shop Vincent with Kazumi Tsuji.
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Thank you to everyone who attended!
For those who missed the evening, the work is still on display and we will be adding pieces to the webshop soon.
On Sunday evening we went to Studio Junction‘s closing party for the participants in their Art in a Courtyard House exhibition, which they put on in conjunction with Doors Open.We were very honored to be able to participate in the show and debut a set of tea and baking carts designed by Mjolk and Studio Junction, and crafted by Studio Junction.
Here is our description:
Tea Cart and Baking Cart Concept
It wasn’t too long ago that the tea cart was a much needed extension to the family home. It was much more common 30 or more years ago that the dining room was a separate entity from the kitchen, and things like formal living rooms were used for high tea in the afternoon. In contemporary times things like dining rooms and formal living rooms have become redundant, and this is probably for the best. However there are some things that were lost in this transition that we feel could have easily found a place in the modern family home.
Tea carts are an extension of the kitchen, they are on wheels and can be used to easily shuffle everything from tea or alcohol, to desserts from the kitchen to table. When necessary the tea cart can take on an important presence, and at the same time be quietly tucked against the wall when not in use. We made the top tray of the tea cart removable to be used like a tray when serving tea. This solves the awkwardness of moving many teacups and desserts at one time, but also provides a thoughtful presentation.
Several reoccurring themes that Studio Junction has been exploring are the court yard as an architectural element, and thinking of the kitchen in terms of a piece of furniture. When using this bar cart, it becomes an extension of the kitchen to the outdoor space. This could be the same for any Toronto backyard or balcony and brings an element from the inside of your home to the outside further blurring the line.
The handles are actually cut and sanded, not steam bent. It makes for an incredible grain.
You can clearly see the Danish influence with the use of tapers and the mix of oak and oiled Peruvian walnut. Our little “Ceremony” milk set was on display as well. As mentioned before, the tray is removable, so you can easily carry its contents from the cart to the dining table or living room table and keep it in use as a serving tray.
A burl pedestal by Adrian Kuzyk.
Paintings by Judith Geher
A potluck dinner with all the participants and their families.
Screen by Joe Lin
Bamboo, rocks and water feature. Their courtyard is amazing (this photo doesn’t do it justice, was using a different lens and setting than usual and it was a hot mess).
Chair by LUBO – lubodesign.com
Hanging terrariums by Crown Flora Studio
Charred wood wall installation by Scott Eunson
Elodie nomming on some yogurt
Oak rocking chair by Megan Blake
Metal paintings by Lisa Petrocco
Children’s book by Jarl Anderson, illustrations and mask by Thomas Barker
The Boston Ivy is everywhere, greening the space in such a nice way.