M+, Hong Kong's new museum for visual culture, recently acquired the Kiyotomo sushi bar, designed by Shiro Kuramata in 1988, as a highlight of growing collection of design and architecture. Now deinstalled from its original location, the entire space, including interior finishes, furnishings and exterior façade, will be preserved and re-installed in the M+ galleries upon completion of the museum building.
This video takes you through the history of the Kiyotomo sushi bar, the story of its deinstallation and interviews with Kuramata collectors and the M+ curatorial team.
About Shiro Kuramata
One of the great Japanese designers of the 20th century, Kuramata (1934-91) was in his time known as much for his interiors as his furniture. He created hundreds of the former, including Esprit stores in Hong Kong, but Kiyotomo is one of the very few of his interiors that remain intact. Beautifully encompassing the designer’s explorations of material, form and the conceptual understanding of objects and spaces, Kiyotomo was a fully functioning sushi restaurant in Tokyo’s Shinbashi district until its closure in 2004.
Deinstallation of Shiro Kuramata’s Kiyotomo sushi bar
Taking four months, the deinstallation of Shiro Kuramata’s Kiyotomo sushi bar in Tokyo was undertaken by Ishimaru Co. Ltd. Founded by Takao Ishimaru, the firm was a frequent collaborator of Kuramata and built the original Kiyotomo space in 1988. In addition to the packing of the restaurant’s furniture and fixtures, the dismantling required the careful removal of over 86 cedar veneer wall panels; the 5.4 meters-long granite sushi counter; 35 square meters of granite floor tiles; and the double vaults of the interior’s acrylic and cedar-veneer ceiling.
M+ acquired the Kiyotomo sushi bar with a partial donation from Richard Schlagman.