Stay from the 1st of May till the 31st of May 2018.
Yumi Ito is a fashion designer and textile artist from Japan, living in London.
She wanted to make dresses ‘visual letters’ about the close friendship correspondence from the 18th century between the Japanese Masatsuna Kutsuki, a hereditary Japanese daimyo, and the Dutch Isaac Titsingh, senior official of the East India Company.
Yumi’s initial plan was to visit Amsterdam in order to do research on Isaac Titsingh (Chief of VOC in Japan), give a workshop about visualizing letters, and work on her art project. When Yumi became interested in Deshima AIR, she wanted to know more about the history and people of Deshima. She started her research by looking for cultural interactions between the Netherlands and Japan.
Visual Letters workshop by Yumi Ito
During her previous visit to the Netherlands Yumi researched the archives of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam found the correspondence from the 18th century between the Japanese Masatsuna Kutsuki, a hereditary Japanese daimyo, and the Dutch Isaac Titsingh, senior official of the East India Company. This exclusive contact during the seclusion of Japan had inspired Ito to translate this event into an art project. Yumi Ito was inspired by these letter exchanges, because they were a lot more than just business as it sparked a bit of culture. On top of that she finds it interesting to see how a message is shaped and conveyed. The way we communicate is influenced by the time and culture we live in. This all inspired Ito to organize a workshop where shaping a message is pulled into a broader perspective. The workshop was organized on the 17th of May by Deshima-AIR and showed the effects of arts and culture on communication.
In this workshop the participants were taught how to “visualize” or “shape” a message. With Ito’s guidance the participants learned about means and ways to convey Titsingh’s or one of your own messages.
‘’organising the workshop with people and sharing creative ideas with them was the event I enjoyed the most in this project”
Having participated in the Deshima-AIR program for the whole month of May, Yumi completed several beautiful art dresses. In order to celebrate the lustrum of Deshima-AIR and the 60th anniversary of the Netherlands-Japan Society a Japanese style ‘’Matsuri’’ was organized in the Okura hotel, Amsterdam. The theme of the party was a Japan market, hosted by Deshima-AIR, where Yumi presented work that she created while participating in the AIR program. It was a festive day with lots of interested people and cultural exchange.
‘’knowing more about Dutch culture through meeting people and visiting places in the Netherland inspired me very much and helped me develop my work. ‘’ _Yumi
Thank you Yumi, we hope to see you again in the future.