Favourite Things #63 - Yasuyo Building II


One from the Archive of Favourite Things

Artist's notes on style, materials and inspiration:

Tokyo's organic, ever-changing surface means that there is always something to see and feel whilst wandering - it continues to hold my attention like no other place.

This extra tall 'favourite thing' girl is inspired by a very distinctive and beautiful building - the Yasuyo Building, in Shinjuku, Tokyo.

The building was designed by Nobumichi Akashi and built in 1969, making it three years older than the Nakagin Capsule Tower Building by Kisho Kurakawa.

I think this one seems pretty timeless by comparison though, and has some visual similarities to the tourist information office in Asakusa by Kengo Kuma, with its stacked appearance. But unlike that building which looks like little houses one on top of the other, the Yasuyo building looks like more like a stack of bolts or cogs. Against the bright light clamour that is Shinjuku it is also surprisingly elegant when lit up at night.

It stands on a narrow plot next to the eastern entrance of Shinjuku Station and houses the long-established kaiseki restaurant Kakiden on the 6th to the 9th floors and has interiors on the 6th, 7th and 9th floors designed by Yoshiro Taniguchi who has also undertaken designs for the Imperial family. There is the Yasuyo Hall on the 7th floor also, which can be booked for lectures, seminars, wedding receptions and Buddhist memorial services. In the basement is the Kakiden gallery. Most of the interiors are traditional Japanese.

I'd like to say it is safe from demolition, but in Tokyo, nothing is certain.

Although my wood girl interpretation of the building is made of octagonal slices, the actual building only has its street facing façade made up of what looks like octagons, in fact the most faces that can be seen is five (and only three of those are full), with the rear of the building turning into an almost triangular block in the building plan.

Because of the way it faces, the building seems at an angle to the ground floor block, and so my wood girl also stands at a jaunty angle on her base - if you stand the block square, she will be looking slightly to her left.

Price includes courier shipping.

My 'favourite things' wood girl series share the places and things I love, a favourite motif or theme, or are inspired by a microseason. Turned/ made from American Tulipwood. They are finished in a matt acrylic protective top coat.

This very tall wood girl is approximately 34cm in height. Favourite Things girls are numbered on the base, this one is #63.

My pieces are painted in a naïve and simple style, with visible brush strokes and differing paint consistencies. It is important to note that these dolls are made from real wood which will have naturally occurring markings and grain, and sometimes there will be small amount of bleeding along the grain, or knots, which is to be expected when using untreated wood - please make sure you consult the pictures carefully before purchasing.

PLEASE NOTE: Wood girls should be kept away from water which can damage the wood and painted surface, and also away from direct heat/ sunlight which also can affect the surface colour and the timber itself.