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Brief Published: 12 Jan 2016

Nendo: Repair-Inspired Design


Japanese studio Nendo's Mino-Yaki plate series is inspired by an ancient ceramic repair technique called kintsugi, which uses lacquer to glue broken pieces back together.

The unique tableware is created by precision-cutting plates in three neutral shades, and then rearranging the pieces to form geometric designs. The ceramics are cut with a water jet to ensure a clean edge, before being sandblasted and pieced back together using a glue lacquer.

Traditionally, kintsugi ceramics feature gold lacquer to highlight the beauty of preservation and repair. Nendo takes a temporary take on the technique by using black lacquer to provide a strong contrast to the soft, matt tones of the ceramics.

As highlighted by last year's exhibition The Department of Repair, the notion of repair is a continual source of interest and inspiration for designers. Brands are also beginning to find value in repair through strategies that enhance product lifespans and appeal to ethically minded consumers – see Adding Value: Long-Lasting Products for further insight.