This year I’ve found myself obsessed with a few different illustrators I’ve discovered from Asia. There is a distinct and mesmerising style found in a lot of contemporary Asian illustrator’s work which differs greatly from what we are currently finding here in Europe. It’s exciting to poke around and see what Eastern gems one can find if they know where to look in the international instagram pool.
It started with the surreal candy hued dreamscapes of Hiroyuki Ishii, and through Hiro, I found Haruna Kawai. Born in Tokyo, Haruna’s work is slightly surrealistic, simple and architectural. I love the simplicity of her work, the strong shapes and lack of shades makes the images very digital in nature yet with rough lines indicating a personal touch. Often times her subjects are surrealistic sculptural forms, Dr.Seuss-esque surreal architectural landscapes. I think that she should illustrate a book because her images have such a strong narrative presence, I am dying to hear the story behind each one.
As our ‘Design Studies’ game goes, I offered Haruna three choices of contemporary furniture designers and architects that I thought would correspond well with her style. She chose Ladies and Gentlemen Studio from New York. Ladies and Gentlemen Studio create playful and sophisticated objects from one of our most coveted chandelier’s EVER ‘Shape Up’ to a number of interesting sculptural desk objects named ‘Balance Studies’.
We were very excited to see how Haruna translated her inspiration in this series of four illustrations. Have a look below what she came up with!