October, 2016

True Nordic Exhibition at The Gardiner Museum

October 14th, 2016


Tuesday night we were excited to go to the opening reception for The Gardiner Museum‘s new exhibition, True Nordic: How Scandinavia influenced design in Canada. Curated by Dr. Rachel Gotlieb and Michael Prokopow, we are honoured that our Garden Works collaboration with Anderssen & Voll is on display.



From the press release: Scandinavian design initially reached Canada’s elite consumers and style-makers via museum and gallery exhibitions, showrooms, small retail shops and articles and advertisements in popular decorator magazines. However, it was the dynamic influx of émigré craftspeople from Scandinavia who both affirmed and vernacularized the aesthetic in Canada and who shaped profoundly the country’s design and craft movement from the 1930s onward. What was broadly known as “Danish modern” became synonymous with ideas about good design, and “comfortable and gracious living.” Capitalizing on the market opportunities presented, Canadian manufacturers added Scandinavian design to their conservative repertoire of colonial and historicist offerings and called these lines, Helsinki, Stanvanger, Scanda and so on. The culminating section of the exhibition will ask why Scandinavian and Nordic aesthetics continue to resonate with so many contemporary Canadian designers and artisans at work today.

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The exhibition was designed by friend of the shop Andrew Jones Design / Graphic design by q30 design inc. Loved the Alto-esque paper room divider and the intimate wall colours.


During the Q&A discussion, there was a bit of talk about how a lot of the designers were married couples. Naturally we like this dynamic a lot!


In the contemporary designers section there are a lot of local designers and artisans, such as Castor, Sean Plaice, MSDS, and Bookhou. It was nice to see everyone in the same place.


The exhibition book was a nice surprise, containing some essays and the exhibition catalog. The fire tools pictured are from a project we have been working on with Winnipeg designer Thom Fougere (to be launched in January).

Please go see this show at the Gardiner Museum, running until January 8.


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Yoshinori Yano Meet & Greet at Mjölk

October 8th, 2016

Yoshinori Yano Demonstration-8

We were recently pleased to receive Yoshinori Yano at Mjölk. At the time, his works had become unfortunately waylaid by a postage fiasco, shunted around the East Coast and Montreal before finally making it to our shop. As a result, we had to cancel our opening. Although this seemed a terrible thing, we ultimately got to have an altogether different experience. On a Saturday afternoon, Mr. Yano did some woodworking in the shop, and chatted with curious customers, press and passersby.


Yoshinori Yano Demonstration-2

Yoshinori Yano Demonstration-3

We were fortunate to be able to borrow some woodworking tools from Peter Tan of Studio Junction.

Yoshinori Yano Demonstration-5

Yoshinori Yano Demonstration-6

Yoshinori Yano Demonstration-7

Yoshinori Yano Demonstration-9

Yoshinori Yano Demonstration-10

The result of this day is a delicate leaf. Thankfully a few days after Mr. Yano left the boxes arrived. They are now in the showroom and in the online webshop. Thank you to all who made it in on short notice, and to all who took an eager interest in the woodworking demo!

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Inspirations : An exhibition of work by Yoshinori Yano at Mjölk

October 6th, 2016


Yoshinori Yano’s sculptures are both ethereal and organic; through them he communicates a quintessentially Japanese idea of beauty in nature.

His technique is slow and measured, using simple hand tools to reveal each form, evoking emotions and ideas already present in nature: a delicate breeze of wind or the melancholy drizzle of rain.

Born in 1973 in Tokyo to a family of artists, Yoshinori Yano discovered woodworking during his studies in Capellagågarden, Sweden. Upon returning to Japan he completed a three year apprenticeship before opening his own studio in the city of Itoshima, Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan in 2003.


Additionally, not pictured in this post but available via the link above are a variety of vases, mobiles and art objects.


Sculptural natural forms.





A variety of platters/trays/dishes/cups/vessels for use.


A leaf carved during our impromptu meet and greet. A vessel.


A sculpture and a wall vase.


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