THE BLOG

Total Design・トータルデザインー; Bynd Artisan

(TOP) Bynd Artisan, Holland Village Atelier
(上) 「バインド・アーチザン」Holland Village 店舗
Photo courtesy of ‘On The Grid’

There is a new generation of business owners in Singapore. In the past, the ideal was to expand businesses quickly with cheaper and faster techniques, creating gigantic factories of people who can do labour of robotic speed(both literally and metaphorically) . This works in the past but it is pointless to out-Ebay Ebay or any other of these big companies in this world of endless competition. Their strategy is to win to the bottom, but now what we want is to win to the top.

シンガポールに次世代の経営者がいます。以前は、理想としてロボットのようなスピードで仕事ができる人々が集まる巨大な工場(文字通りであろうと比喩的であろうと)を作り、より安くて速い技術を使って急速にビジネスを拡大させようとしていました。これは過去のことですが、この世界における無限の競争の中でイーベイやイーベイのような大きな組織を作れば意味がありません。それらの戦略は底辺での勝利を目指していますが、今私たちに必要なのは頂点で勝利を収めることです。

People in Singapore are no longer willing to do factory-like work, they no longer want to do unfulfilling labour and be easily replaceable. Especially with the ageing population, businesses have trouble finding this gap of employees who are willing to take up these jobs, often turning to foreign employees from countries like China, India or Malaysia.

シンガポールの人々は、以前のように工場のような労働をしたがらないし、達成感のない仕事や簡単に人員交代できる仕事もしたがりません。特に高齢化とともに、これらの仕事に就きたいと思っている労働者のギャップや、中国やインド、マレーシアのような国々からの外国人労働者の雇用問題をビジネスは抱えている。

(TOP) Brand brochure
(上) ブランドパンフレット
Photo courtesy of ‘&Larry’

A book binding business was also struggling in what they call a sunset industry. The employees were old and they just make the same kind of books over and over again. In 2014, they decided to take the bold step of rebranding their entire brand starting with renaming it “Bynd Artisan”

本作りに関連しているビジネスはまた、斜陽産業と呼ばれることに悩んでいました。労働者は年配で、ただ同じことを繰り返し、同じような本を作っています。2014年、彼らは大きな一歩を踏み出す決意をしました。「バインド・アーチザン」へブランド名を改名し、新ブランドを立ち上げたのです。

このブランドの創業者は、「トータル・デザイン」という信条のもと、新しいベンチャービジネスを確立させました。これには、ブランドデザイン、プロダクトデザインやインテリアデザイン、人デザインやコラボレーティブデザインが含まれています。

The founders built this new venture upon the belief in “Total Design” which includes branding design, product & experience design, interior design, people design and collaborative design.

They brought all their backend services to the frontline, making exciting retail stores, branded as “Ateliers”. They also created a strong brand image that is consistent from the products to the interior. An interior reminiscent of a craftsman’s workshop is reflected from the raw textures of the brick walls to the old book-making machinery, creating a unique, stimulating customer experience. A customized notebook system is designed where one can choose from a wide variety of materials such as rivets, strings, paper and leather, even topping it off with an engraved name to make it the perfect gift.

「アトリエ」として確立された、人々を楽しませる小売店を作り、彼らは全てのバックエンドのサービスを最前線に持ってきました。彼らは、製品からインテリアに至るまで首尾一貫している強力なブランドイメージを作り上げました。ユニークなものを生み出したり、顧客の好奇心を刺激したりするインテリアは、煉瓦壁の感触から古典印字機に至るまで反映されている職人の作業場を思い起こさせます。彼らは、カスタマイズできるノートブックシステムを作りました。これは、リベット、糸、紙やカバーのような素材を豊富な種類の中から選ぶことができ、完璧な贈り物のために、それに名前を掘って仕上げることさえもできます。

(TOP) Store Interiors
(上) 店内インテリア
Photo courtesy of ‘&Larry’

Every store is assigned with a more veteran craftsman who has an irreplaceable position, some are even poster boys of the brand. They are taken out of the traditional context of working behind the scenes to the customers where they have a workshop-like space in the middle of the store. They are also paired with a young apprentice, where they will impart their invaluable skills and cultivate the next generation. The special effort made for the growth and welfare of the employees exemplifies “People Design”

全ての店舗に取って代わることのできないベテランの職人を割り当てて、その中の数人はブランドの広告塔になりました。店の真ん中には作業場があり、職人は顧客に作業が見えるように正面を向き、その場の後方で働いています。彼らは若い弟子を付けて、製本の技術と知識を伝えようとしています。従業員の成長ややりがいを感じられる努力は「人デザイン」の代表的な例です。

Collaboration is imperative for always pushing out new, fresh works. Bynd Artisan collaborates with people from a wide range of fields like graphic designers, singer-songwriters and fashion designers. A notable example is when they recently collaborated with the 1 Michelin starred local establishment Iggy’s on a dessert known as “5 Stones”. Inspired by the popular Singaporean childhood game, the dessert exudes a local vibe not just in appearance but also in flavours such as Bandung and Bur Bur Cha Cha.

新しくて、斬新な作品を生み出すために、コラボレーションは常に大切にしなければなりません。バインド・アーチザンはグラフィックデザイナーやシンガーソングライター、ファッションデザイナーなどの幅広い分野で活躍している人々とコラボレーションをしました。最近では、「イギーズ」という一つ星レストランと協力して「5 Stones」というお菓子を作りました。シンガポールの子供たちに人気のあるゲームに感銘を受けて、形だけでなく味も「ボボチャチャ」や「バンドン」のようにシンガポール風にしました。

(TOP-LEFT) 5 Stones – A dessert collaboration with Iggy’s
(TOP-RIGHT) Poster of veteran craftsmen
(上左) 「イギーズ」というレストランとコラボした「5 Stones」というお菓子
(上右) 職人のポスター
Photo courtesy of ‘&Larry’

They grew to 5 outlets in a very short time, reflecting the potential of the brand. They were also awarded the highest accolade of Singapore design, the President’s Design Award, becoming a role model of how design supports businesses. I am confident that in time to come, there would be more and more people with the same mindset and we will see people pushing the boundaries once again.

短期間の間に5つの新店舗がオープンし、ブランドの将来性がはっきりと見えてきました。さらに、2016年にシンガポールで最も権威のある大統領デザイン賞を受賞し、彼らのデザインがビジネスを支える手本となりました。同じ考えを持つ人が増えていくと、ふたたびその境地を開いていく人々が現れるはずです。
 
 

 
 


DISCLAIMER☞The writing and content have seem odd during the attempt to draw a parallel between my limited Japanese ability and English expressions. This is for my practice, let me know areas of improvements thanks. Special thanks to my Japanese teacher, Anna.

Specific Feelings・具体的な感情

“私は普通にイヤホンで映画を聞きます。
ただ対話。
どうやってこんな音程やトーンが表れられますか?
こんな考えよくあります。”
—DEAN, R&Bソングライター

“Usually I listen to movies through my earphones,
just their dialogues.
How do I express these tones or sounds visually?
I think about that alot”
– Dean, R&B Artist

What inspires you? How can you get inspired?
Sometimes it is hard to find the right inspiration and we would get the writer’s block and have trouble delivering good work, no matter what medium you are working in, be it food, music or art.

あなたは何のことからインスパイアされましたか?どのようにインスパイアされましたか?
我々はたまに創作の行き詰まりを会って、ひらめきも来させにくくて、料理や美術や音楽どんな媒質でも、いい作品を作るのは難しいです。

以前、演劇のクラスで私たちが学んだ大事なことは「感情は単独なものではない」ということです。
もし私たちがただ喜、怒、哀、楽をそれぞれに演じたら、人間のような演技ではなくて、ロボットのようになります。
人間の感情は時々わけがわからなくなり、悲しみと憂うつさを感じると同時に怒りも含んでいます。

I remember back in my theatre class days, a prominent thing that we learnt is that emotions are not singular.
We don’t just feel “happy, angry, excited, sad” by itself, that would be robotic.
Sometimes our feelings are mixed up and complicated, you feel sad and depressed but at the same time its embedded with some anger.
 
 
 
 

(TOP-LEFT) Kowloon Walled City, Hong Kong 1970s/1980s
(TOP-RIGHT) Kawasaki Warehouse, a Japanese arcade inspired by the Kowloon Walled City
(上左) 以前の香港九龍城
(上右) 現在九龍城インスパイアされたゲームセンター、Kawasaki Warehouse

 
 

The same could be said about design projects.
We are often briefed to make a work “friendly, cute, cool or professional” and sometimes the result we produce are just like that.
It doesn’t touch their hearts, their reactions would just be “Oh, that’s cute” and that’s it.

デザインでも同じことが言われています。
クライアント の要求に応じていつもフレンドドリー、プロ、かっこいい、可愛いなど基本的な特徴を表現させます。
作った作品も書いたとおりにそのままです 。
人の心も動かないし、「ええ、あれは可愛いですね」と言ってこれで終わり。

特別に感じられた作品から、具体的な雰囲気と性格が見えます。
実際の場所、時代と行動の精神が描写されています。
1980年代VHSの懐古・懐かしさ、パリアールデコの魅力、香港九龍城のさびた雰囲気。
このような特徴が作品の中に表れています。

I observed in works that makes me feel something special, that they have very specific feelings.
They portray the spirit of real places, eras and movements.
The nostalgia of the 1980s VHS style, the glamour of Parisian Art Deco, or the dystopian vibes of the Kowloon walled city.
There is soul in these kind of inspirations.
 
 

 
(ABOVE) Songs by DEAN inspired from movies like Bonnie & Clyde.
From the lyrics to the acting and ambient sounds added, the spirit of the movie can be felt.
(上)「俺たちに明日はない(ボニーとクライド)」とかの映画がインスパイアされた歌手DEANの歌。
歌詞、PVの演技、入った雑音とか映画の精神が感じられます。

 
 

An example can be found in the Korean hip-hop fashion brand Nonagon.
Like hip hop music itself, the brand’s personality is partially mischievous and sometimes aggressive yet is very chill and relaxed at times.
Such flexible and multifaceted vibes are apparent through their logo, website, social media, advertisements and videos etc.

ノナゴンという韓国ヒップホップファッションブランドに、その一例がみられます。
ヒップホップのような茶目っ気と余裕があるのに強い感情もブランドの性格に入っています。
こんな人間のようにフレキシブルで、多面な様子がロゴ、ウェブサイト、広告、動画などのところに表れています。

 
(ABOVE) Nonagon’s Brand Film.
(上) ノナゴンのブランド動画。

 
 

これから作品がもっとはっきり分析できるようになりたい。面白い話題を研究して、もっと具体的な感情を作品に現したい。

I wish to be able to analyze works better from now on, researching into interesting topics and making works that carry specific feelings.
 
 

 
 


DISCLAIMER☞The writing and content have seem odd during the attempt to draw a parallel between my limited Japanese ability and English expressions. This is for my practice, let me know areas of improvements thanks.

DESIGN TRAVEL GUIDE ☞ Taiwan’16

DESIGN TRAVEL GUIDE ☞ Taiwan’16

I’ll be making a series called “DESIGN TRAVEL GUIDE”, where I’ll just be documenting adventures to cool places, both local and abroad! It would not just be places of design interests, but anywhere I enjoy. I merely named it “DESIGN TRAVEL GUIDE” because it is a list made by a designer, me in this case.

The first stop is in Taiwan! I went before I enlisted and I felt that there are 6 places worth sharing that people might not know of. Its my third time in Taiwan and it never disappoints! There are tons of design places, especially after Taipei was named a design capital along with the recent rise in fame of a wave of Taiwanese Designers. Taiwan —  definitely a satisfying and therapeutic trip.

 
 

#1 Themed
Mini Golf

Mr. Mini-Golf ’s Club 米尼.葛夫俱樂部
★★★☆☆

Adress No. 71, Guanqian Road, West District, Taichung City, Taiwan 404
Website  Event Link
Access  On the right side of National Hotel & Behind Park Lane by CMP
Date 7th July – 4th September 2016
Price  $100 TWD for each set of stick and golf balls


The only place that is not in taipei in my list is this miniature golf club in Tai Zhong. There are many tiny huts each housing a mini golf course of varying themes – From sci-fi to horror etc. Its a really delightful place, definitely an interesting place to visit and play. You can even eat small round cheesecakes at the store right beside it!

This golf club is housed by CMP Block of Museums and unfortunately is not a permanent fixture, check out the website for the latest cool events they host!

 


 
 

#2 Exotic
Ice-cream

Snow King Ice-Cream 雪王冰淇淋供應中心
★★★★★

Adress 100, Taiwan, Taipei City, Zhongzheng District, Section 1, Wuchang St, No. 65
Website  http://www.snowking.com.tw/
Access  8 Minutes walk from Ximending Station Exit 6
Price Ranging from $80-150 TWD

Hours
Mon-Sun: 12:00~20:00


Snow King is an ice-cream store here since 1947. Located at a corner near the popular street, Xi Men Ding, its a really cool hideout with 73 flavours.

Let me name out some crazy ones: Taiwan Beer, Rice Cake, Tomato, Bitter gourd and Tofu. Sounds bad right? But its really great! I tried Basil and Pork floss flavours, and they had a rich creamy taste, its still sweet and nice with just hints of the basil fragrance and salty floss bits. Of course, for the less adventurous they have friendlier flavours like their signature Watermelon, Mango, Banana, Melon and Milk.

Since it is nearby such a hotspot, I would really recommend making a trip down to this “only in taiwan” shop that serve ice-cream flavours (I dare say for some) that you would not find anywhere else in the world.

 


 
 

#3 Papers, Books & Designs

Pinmo Pure Store 品墨良行
★★★★☆

Adress No. 63, Yongkang Street, Da’an District, Taipei City, Taiwan 106
Website  http://www.pinmo.com.tw/
Access 9 minute walk from Dongmen Station

Hours
Tues-Sat: 12:00~20:00
*Closed on Mon & Sun


PinMo is a renowned Taiwanese design studio who opened their own stationery, lifestyle, design, book store/cafe.

While I was there, they were giving some bookmaking workshop at the side tables, and the whole place gave great vibes. I often visit various paper shops in Singapore and what I found here is a great range of paper(over 200 types) with textures that you couldn’t find back home. This was valuable to me as a designer and I bought some samples home.

Again, this was something unique to Taiwan as an establishment by a homegrown studio, a place that reflects the local design culture.

 
 

#4 World-
Class Design Exhibits

Song Shan Cultural Park: Measuring Exhibition 松山文創園區: 單位展
★★★☆☆

Adress No. 133, Guangfu South Road, Xinyi District, Taipei City, Taiwan 110
Website  http://www.songshanculturalpark.org/
Access  10 minute walk from Sun Yat Sen Memorial Hall Station

Hours
Mon-Sun: 09:00~18:00


A former tabacco factory warehouse has turned into a site for the newest design exhibitions. More than just various museums like the Red Dot Design Museum, there is also a famous Eslite book and lifestyle store.

I visited there when an exhibition called “Measuring” was on; A notable thing is that it is imported from Japan where it was curated for the renowned 21_21 Design Sight Museum. It is not hard to imagine that it was an exhibition filled with obsessions about all sorts of unit measurements. Very OCD indeed.

 


 
 

#5 Consulate turned Cinema

SPOT Taipei Cinema 光亮 電影院
★★★★☆

Adress No.18, Sec. 2, Zhongshan N. Rd., Zhongshan Dist., Taipei City 104, Taiwan
Website  http://www.spot.org.tw/
Access  3 minute walk from Zhongshan Station Exit 3
Price Standard Tickets at $260TWD

Hours
Mon-Sun: 11:00~22:00


This place was once a US consulate that the American President Nixon once stayed in. It has since been converted to a arthouse theatre and cafe. I gotta say, this place has the summer vibes, very cool. I mean its like an such a beautiful independent cinema, kind of like a rendezvous spot.

The movie I watched there is a german film called “The Most Beautiful Day” about how 2 terminally ill patients document themselves going on the craziest adventures in their last days. Great movie! Make sure to check out the movies available as well as timings in the website before you go there! I was too late because there was a controversial hong kong film, ‘Ten Years'(banned in china) that aired there till the day I went.


 
 

#6 A Novel Night

海辺的卡夫卡 Kafka by the Sea
★★★★☆

Adress No. 2, Lane 244, Section 3, Roosevelt Rd, Zhongzheng District, Taipei City
Website: https://www.facebook.com/kafka.republic/
Access  8 mins walk away from Taipower Building Staion Exit 1 or Gongguan station (公館) Exit 4

Hours
Mon-Thu: 11:30~22:30
Fri-Sun: 12:00~24:00


With the cafe owner being a band member(of Rock act 1976) and also a big fan of Haruka Murakami, you know this is going to be good. The cafe/bar doubles as a live stage on weekends, offering gigs to budding musicians. Like how the cafe is named after the famous novel, there is a poetic atmosphere. There was an array of albums and books sold there. Almost as though I was in the painting Night Hawks!

I got myself irish coffee and it was the first time I tried alcoholic coffee. I would say you need an acquired taste, it’s too bitter for a boy like me.

Of course, its advisable to go at night for the vibes.

 

 

 
 

 

Next stop ☞ Hong Kong’16