Higashi for the Anthropocene | アントロポセンの干菓
in collaboration with Kagizen-Yoshifusa (Kyoto), Wagashi Asobi (Tokyo) Ippodo Tea (NYC), Kajitsu Restaurant (NYC)




On October 25, 2014 six guests, Heather Davis, Evie Garf, Lisa Hirmer, Rachel Sussman, Nicola Twilley and Marina Zurkow, were invited to join smudge studio at Kajitsu Restaurant for a permformative research project, Higashi for the Anthropocene.

Specially designed higashi were offered alongside traditional, autumnal-inspired higashi and a bowl of matcha tea prepared by Ippodo tea, New York. The intention of the gathering was to offer hospitality to our guests while at the same time considering and/or inventing together new ways to inhabit the Anthropocene in our daily lives.

Notes on higashi designs:



White & pink 移ろ (utsuroi) oval with red wavelength pattern. Waves are events that continuously compose all matter on Earth. Utsuroi is a Japanese adjective frequently used in Japanese aesthetics and design. It translates approximately as: “changes in circumstances or fortune,” “fade,” “wane” and “vicissitudes.” Also, "shift, move, change, drift, catch (as in catch cold or catch fire), pass into." Pink connotes fleshy interior of living things. (Designed by Jamie Kruse, produced by Kagizen Yoshifusa, Kyoto).


Grey bullet/misshapen sphere topped with embedded/emerging “tiny blue dot.” (Designed by Jamie Kruse, produced by Kagizen Yoshifusa, Kyoto)


White 切なさ(setsunasa) oval. Setsunasa is a Japanese adverb to describe an atmosphere or personal feeling approximate to “bittersweet, wistful + loneliness.” From the verb 切る (to cut) and adjective 切ない (sadness that tears at the heart). Etymology of the word includes, "thinking something precious.” The irony of eating a “bittersweet” sugar candy is suggested. White is associated with both purity and mourning in Japan. Setsunasa was used in original translation of Toshiki Okada’s play, Sonic Life of the Giant Tortoise (2010) to describe a hollow feeling in one’s solar plexus for which there is no fix, but after which, the lingering “bittersweet” feeling signals that you had “really lived.” (Designed by Jamie Kruse, produced by Kagizen Yoshifusa, Kyoto)

Sakura (cherry) blossom. A design typically available only in spring, but made for this project in autumn to signal the seasonal strangenesses that are now upon us, such as trees blooming out of season. (Designed and produced by Wagashi, Asobi, Tokyo)

Additional documentation and details on the project can be found on the related FOP post:
Higashi for the Anthropocene | 10.27.14

Remote recipients of the project were Jane Bennett, Michele Sorensen and Valerie Triggs



*Special thanks also to Zenya Imanashi ((Kagizen Yoshifusa) Motohiro Inaba (Wagashi Asobi), Riichiro Kato (Ippodo Tea) and the entire staff at Kajitsu restaurant.

** Sincere gratitude to Valerie Triggs and Michele Sorensen for project support.




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