Mino Washi from Gifu

We were commissioned by Gifu Prefecture in Japan to design its first UK exhibition of Japanese Mino washi paper at The Proud Archivist, London, from 3 to 13 November 2015.

The exhibition displays some of the finest contemporary uses of Mino washi paper, whilst exploring the tradition and craft of this classic Japanese material. Japanese washi paper has been made in Mino since the 8th Century. Mino is in Gifu Prefecture located in central Japan, where clear river water flows through the town and is used to wash the bark of mulberry trees. This is the foundation element of making Mino washi paper, and in 2014, the paper making techniques were added to UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list.

A highlight of the exhibition is a collection of Akari lamps by Isamu Noguchi. When Noguchi visited Gifu, he was inspired by the nighttime scenes of cormorant fishing by fire on the river. Our exhibition design draws on the black reflective surfaces of the nearby Regents Canal. The polished planes and their reflections accentuate the surreal and playful quality of the lamps as you move around the space. 

SoHo+Co designed and fabricated all elements of the exhibition, including promotional material and dioramas of paper making.