Based in Tokyo, ARKO is a self-described ‘straw artist’ who has been applying her creative approach to traditional craft since 2002. Represented by the Somewhere Tokyo design gallery, her use of natural materials and age-old techniques re-insert fading customs back into modern life.
An agglomeration of rice straw, her wall-mounted artworks hark back to a more traditional era. Once woven into everyday Japanese life – from footwear, to clothes and blankets – the material is now mainly used in the holy ornaments for the Shimenawa New Year ceremony. Using unique stitching patterns to create beautiful undulating forms, ARKO seeks to re-forge the fading bond between countryside and contemporary living. Emanating a natural scent, the rice straw provides an organic reminder of ethnic identity and natural providence.
ARKO was a finalist at the LOEWE Craft Prize 2018 with another of her rice straw sculptures.