Takuya Kamiyama on making the Dry Earth Beaker
This week we caught up with a fresh talent in the world of silversmithing - Japanese-born maker Takuya Kamiyama, who recently applied his striking style to a silver beaker for Made for the Table, our summer exhibition all about silverware.
Why did you decide to become a silversmith?
I was inspired by Hiroshi Suzuki, a very influential contemporary silversmith, who I've also been lucky enough to work under, learning raising techniques. I graduated from Musashino Art University in Tokyo, and worked for a time as a Metal Departmental Assistant. I'll soon be graduating from Bishopsland and working under Ndidi Ekubia in Manchester.
How would you describe your design style?
My style is inspired by the natural world, from observing very closely the surface qualities and textures in nature, experimenting with them and then translating them into my work, often using hand raising, punching and chasing. For example, my beaker for Made for the Table is called The Dry Earth.
Aesthetics are a priority for me, but I always keep functionality in mind, and mix old and new techniques - my influences are more contemporary but I have great respect for the historic, too.
Do you have a favourite piece that you've created for commission?
This one! I'm a new and emerging maker and this commission for Made for the Table is my first, and I'm very honoured to be taking part. Because a beaker is quite a basic, staple item for a silversmith, it provides a good opportunity to represent your own individual style as a maker, which is great for a first commission.
What in your mind sets silver apart from other tableware?
Silver has a great colour, presence and relationship with light and reflection. It's timeless.
Do you agree that 'Gin tastes better in Silver'?
Absolutely, I think everyone should drink in silver, not just Gin but all spirits - it's a very calming experience. I can't wait to see visitors using my beaker at the exhibition.