Moonflower Sagaya Ginza

MoonFlower Sagaya Ginza: A Unique Fusion of Culinary & Digital Art

MoonFlower Sagaya Ginza, nestled in the heart of Tokyo, Japan, is a distinctive dining concept brought to life through the collaboration between Sagaya, a luxury restaurant renowned for its seasonal cuisine and "Saga Beef," a prestigious Wagyu beef brand, and teamLab, a globally recognized art collective. This intimate dining space, accommodating only eight guests, is adorned with a permanent digital art installation by teamLab, crafting an immersive atmosphere that harmoniously merges gastronomic delights with interactive digital art.

The ethos behind MoonFlower Sagaya Ginza is to curate a dining environment where art and delectable seasonal dishes coexist. The interior of the restaurant presents an ideal amalgamation of food and art, with interactive digital art installations showcasing trees and flowers that bloom across the dinnerware, evolving with the seasons. This unique dining experience is further enriched by the use of Nigoshide porcelain dishes from Sakaida Kakiemon XV and a variety of traditional Japanese art, including Arita ware from the Meiji Era and Riso porcelain by its 4th generation heir, Shinji Terauchi.

The digital art installation, named "Worlds Unleashed and then Connecting," is a central element of the dining experience. As each dish is served, the world encapsulated within the dish is released, unfolding onto the table and into the surrounding space. The worlds released from each dish interact with each other, respond to the actions of the diners, and merge to form a single, continuous world that is in constant flux.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRJTRcfGmAk

The MoonFlower Dinner Course, limited to eight guests per day, is a 12-dish menu centered around the theme of "Transforming high-quality seasonal ingredients into delicious dishes." The ingredients used vary with the changing seasons, with new course dishes being designed for each season. This, coupled with the interactive digital art, creates a multi-sensory experience that blurs the boundaries between the tangible and intangible, offering an unparalleled fusion of food and digital art.

MoonFlower Sagaya Ginza is more than a mere restaurant; it's a unique dining experience that redefines traditional dining norms. It's a realm where imagination knows no bounds, where guests can savour exquisite dishes while being immersed in a world of interactive digital art. This extraordinary dining experience is a testament to the innovative possibilities that can be realized when culinary art and digital technology converge.

Images via teamLab

Azulik resort

Azulik Uh May: An Architectural Ode to Sustainability and Nature in Tulum

In the heart of the Mexican jungle, Azulik Uh May stands as a remarkable embodiment of sustainable architecture and the profound bond between humans and nature. This extraordinary cultural complex, conceived by Eduardo Neira, also known as "Roth", the founder of Roth Architecture, symbolizes a harmonious blend of sustainability, artistic expression, and communal spirit.

Situated in Tulum, Mexico, Azulik Uh May is a resort that effortlessly merges with its natural environment. The architectural design is inspired by the principles of biomimicry, a discipline that seeks to solve human challenges by emulating nature's ingenious solutions. The resort is designed to coexist with nature, not to dominate or damage it, thereby aligning with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals for Sustainable Cities and Communities.

The design of the resort harmonizes modern and ancestral elements through organic and spiral forms. The spaces respect the inherent characteristics of the location, echoing the wisdom of nature. The complex is characterized by fluid shapes: spiraling walkways lined with bejuco vines and secluded nooks that invite visitors to explore barefoot. The design breaks away from traditional architectural norms, with no right angles to be found.

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The central gallery, IK LAB, is a manifestation of Roth's vision to create a reflective space where art and nature intersect. Living trees sprout from openings in the polished concrete floor and extend through tunnels suspended from the ceiling. When it rains, the openings in the roof channel water directly to their roots, fostering a unique interplay between the built environment and nature.

Azulik Uh May transcends the conventional definition of a resort; it's a cultural hub that houses an innovative art space, a design and fashion lab, a cutting-edge recording studio, and artist residencies. At the core of the center, a school dedicated to the universal language of art and craft unites the local Mayan community, resident artists, international students, and scholars.

The resort's dedication to sustainability is not limited to its architecture. During construction, the original topography of the ecosystem was preserved, with the architectural structures virtually hovering over the ground on a system of piles and platforms. This approach minimizes disruption to the ground ecosystem, further underscoring the resort's commitment to environmental preservation.

Azulik Uh May is a testament to the transformative power of sustainable architecture and the deep connection between humans and nature. It's a place where art, nature, and human creativity intersect, offering a unique, immersive experience that pushes the boundaries of traditional resort design. This architectural wonder is not just a place to stay; it's a place to connect, to discover, and to be inspired.

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> Azulik
> Sferik
Images via Roth Architecture

Nagami X Ecoalf

Nagami & Ecoalf: Sustainable Retail Design with 3D-Printed Interiors

In an era where sustainability and technology intersect, Spanish design brand Nagami and sustainable clothing brand Ecoalf have collaborated to create a unique retail space that embodies their shared commitment to eco-friendly practices. The Ecoalf store in Las Rozas Village, Madrid, is a testament to the power of innovative design and recycled materials, with its interior almost entirely 3D printed from recycled plastic.

The store's interior, designed by Nagami, is a striking visual representation of a melting glacier, a metaphor for the urgent issue of climate change. The walls, shelves, and display tables are crafted from 3.3 tonnes of repurposed plastic waste, primarily sourced from hospitals. This plastic has been transformed into translucent surfaces that mimic the appearance of melting glaciers, creating a unique and immersive shopping experience.

Nagami X Ecoalf

Nagami utilized a robotic arm equipped with a custom-built extruder to 3D print the complex forms that make up the store's interior. This innovative approach to design and manufacturing not only highlights the potential of 3D printing technology but also serves as a powerful statement on the climate crisis. The undulating forms that cover almost all of the store's internal surfaces pushed the robotic printing technology to its limit, demonstrating the potential of this technology in creating unique and sustainable designs.

Nagami X Ecoalf

The Ecoalf store is the first fully 3D-printed interior completed by Nagami, and it may be the first in the world to be fully 3D-printed using recycled plastic. This project was completed in a remarkably short lead time of just three months from design to installation, showcasing the efficiency of 3D printing technology.

The design of the store goes beyond aesthetics, reflecting the ethos of both Nagami and Ecoalf. Both companies are committed to sustainable manufacturing practices. Ecoalf creates clothing, footwear, and accessories using recycled materials, including plastic bottles, discarded fishing nets, used tyres, and post-industrial wool and cotton. Similarly, Nagami uses recycled plastic in a closed-loop production process to create furniture, sculptures, interiors, and architectural elements.

The store's design also ensures that the materials used can be disassembled and reused or recycled for future projects. The plastic itself is almost infinitely recyclable, losing just one per cent of its structural performance with each new use, according to Nagami.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smPHPCbGFko&ab_channel=Ecoalf

Ecoalf store in Las Rozas Village, Madrid, is a pioneering example of sustainable retail design. Through the innovative use of 3D printing technology and recycled materials, Nagami and Ecoalf have created a space that not only provides a unique shopping experience but also raises awareness about the importance of sustainable practices and the urgent issue of climate change. This project serves as a powerful reminder of the potential of design and technology in creating a more sustainable future.

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> Ecoalf
All photography is by Alfonso-Quiroga unless otherwise stated.