This is a project created by combining the talent and perspective of Kaori Akiyama of STUDIO BYCOLOR, which is known for its proficiency in colors and materials, and a young Japanese traditional Ise-katagami paper craft artisan Keiko Nasu who mastered the historical skills of Ise-katagami paper artworks of a thousand years and works passionately to pass it on to the next generation.  


According to Keiko, there is a genuine beauty formed by the technique of carving found in Ise-katagami craft works, which has been cultivated by her predecessors.  


Through MATERIAL IN TIME, the creators hope to generate the opportunity to share the ambition to live with time-honored historical techniques and material by creating products commonly used in households.




“Katagami” are patterned stencil papers that are considered as a historic traditional craftwork. They are known to be used to dye Yuzen style and the small Japanese patterns called Komon. Ise-katagami is hand-carved by craftsmen on thin layers of Japanese washi paper treated with astringent persimmon tannin.  


Originally, the Japanese Ise-katagami papers are used as a tool for dyeing. For this collaboration project, the patterned katagami papers themselves are used to create beautiful light fixtures called “kata-dori”. The pattern comes from birds that live in the Ise Grand Shrine called Blue-and-White flycatchers.  


The collection includes three type of light fixtures. One is composed of the material to create katagami called “shibugami” paper, which is layers of papers treated with astringent persimmon tannin. Another type is made after having the traditional paper craft artisan Keiko carve patterns on the shibugami paper. And the third type of lighting fixture is created by washi papers imbued with patterns that are dyed using Ise-katagami. The exhibit will include the production process in order to highlight the extraordinary material and technique applied to create this collection that has manifested in the form of lighting.