Japan Seen Through a Danish Filter

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Japan Seen Through a Danish Filter

The Japanese silversmith Yuki Ferdinansen moved to Denmark 22 years ago. Her art can be described as Japan seen through a Danish filter.

“I want to sense these vastly different cultures and allow them to rearrange naturally and be expressed. My inspiration always comes from nature, expressed through the Fibonacci spiral systematic,” says Yuki Ferdinansen.

Japan Seen Through a Danish Filter
Zen by Yuki Ferdinansen

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The Fibonacci spiral is named after the discoveries of the Italian mathematician Leonardo Fibonacci (1170-1250). Based on the mating characteristics of rabbits, he developed a series of numbers starting with 0 and 1, whereupon each next number is the sum of the two preceding. The number sequence can be used in nature, art and architecture to explain how certain shapes and structures are built up.

Yuki Ferdinandsen (Japanese, b. 1958) is a metalsmith artist living and working in Denmark whose refined minimalist works embody the aesthetics and traditional craftsmanship of her native Japan as distilled through a Danish lens.

In Denmark, she has combined the Japanese technique arare – which means hail and are small holes in a plate that follows a certain pattern – with Danish design tradition.

Japan Seen Through a Danish Filter
Arere by Yuki Ferdinansen

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“With my hammer, with its small bumps I form a plate of silver; this solid piece gets a floating look simultaneously with flexibility. It has durability, weight, light, reflection, contrast, and silver’s unique brilliance. Silver’s gloss is hot and cold simultaneously, it is this gloss and disposition that is the charm of working with silver,” she says.

“Approximately 20 hits are required to create each bead-like protrusion, and the meditative and repetitive nature of the process imbues her works with an ethereal quality. “I enjoy every stroke and every blade is followed by step with the foot. Every sound of the rhythm of “my hammer’s dance” I feel in the whole of my body and enjoy within my soul”, says Yuki.

A subtle and nuanced play of light and shadow also emerges on the textured surfaces of the vessels, complemented by a semi-matte, whitened silvery finish achieved through an acid solution bath.

Japan Seen Through a Danish Filter
The Fibonacci spiral is named after the discoveries of the Italian mathematician Leonardo Fibonacci (1170-1250).

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During her years in Denmark, she has made several works: from flower vases and large dishes, to earrings and an ice cooler. Her work has been placed in both private and public collections including the Danish Design Museum, Copenhagen, and The National Museum, Stockholm.

Japan Seen Through a Danish Filter, written by Tor Kjolberg

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