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The excellence of craftsmanship: Kyoto artistry meets Bvlgari Design the visionary roman high jeweler meets the excellence of Japanese Artistry at the Kyoto guest state house
Bvlgari Japan Ltd. (headquarters: Chuo-ku, Tokyo; President: Walter Bolognino, hereinafter “Bvlgari Japan”) hosted a special encounter between BVLGARI, the magnificent and contemporary Roman High Jeweler, and the excellence of Kyoto craftsmanship.
The Kyoto State Guest House is located in Kyoto, a traditional and culturally rich city of Japan. The facility was built in 2005 for the purpose of welcoming guests from abroad, for helping them understand Japan and for deepening their friendship with the country. In order to harmonize the historical sites with the natural environment of the area, this house was created in a sophisticated traditional Japanese style, with a hip-and-gable roof which is called Irimoya. Also included is the free architectural design based on the decorative alcove, which is called Sukiya. Another special feature is the formal style fence called Tsuijibei, which is made by pounding a mixture of mud and clay and placing it between wooden frames. To build this house, many artisans, including Sukiya style carpenters, plasterers, special gardeners and metal foil cutters collaborated on special techniques which are recognized as traditional accomplishments in Kyoto. Interior design features include Nishijin fabric picture fittings called Makie, which are sprinkled with flecks of gold, silver or beautiful paint. Moreover, carefully selected lacquerware that exemplifies tradition and excellent craftsmanship augments the graceful interior decor.
The Kyoto State Guest House offers a sense of hospitality based on original Japanese culture which makes it unique compared to the Western style of the State Guest House, Akasaka Palace, Tokyo.
This is the first time in the 13 years since its establishment that a luxury brand has hosted a special event here to celebrate the incredible level of artistry embraced by the location and all of the city of Kyoto.
On the day of the event, Bvlgari Japan invited 30 students to a special talk session featuring the Kyoto-style Makie craftsman and poet Yutaro Shimode, as well as Jewelry Creative Director Lucia Silvestri and High Jewelry Senior Director Giampaolo Della Croce from Bvlgari’s Rome headquarters. During the session, speakers talked about special crafting techniques, traditional motifs, creative inspirations, different materials and how they are treated, and the techniques and inventive approaches used during actual production processes, as well as touching on the characteristics and commonalities between their individual crafts. The discussion served to heighten the students’ interest in craftsmanship that strives to embody the beauty of Kyoto and Italy respectively.
Meanwhile, a breathtaking exhibit showcasing Bvlgari’s new high jewelry collection
“Festa” spanning over 200 pieces, in addition to luxury watches, was on display in Kyoto.
Giorgio Starace, Italian Ambassador to Japan, gave the following congratulatory message for this special event.
“I am really delighted to see that BVLGARI has realized this unique event in such an outstanding framework, perfectly matching the Italian firm’s high level of craftsmanship in the jewelry sector and the Japanese capacity to always seek for perfection in every detail. The fusion of these two worlds has created an unbeatable experience for the students who will attend, who will be inspired and who will treasure this knowledge to be used in their future creations. The Italian touch of excellency has been also represented by the chef Fantin, whose astonishing dishes have contributed to stimulate the creativity of the attendees to this special event.Italy and Japan, countries of genius and terrific know-how, can build together new styles and tendencies learning from each other. Therefore, I fully support this initiative by BVLGARI, hoping that it will be fruitful and just the first of a long-standing tradition. Sincere congratulations and best wishes!”
Walter Bolognino, President of Bvlgari Japan, gave the following comment
“The Eternal City of Rome, where BVLGARI was founded, and Kyoto, a place that has captivated people for thousands of years, both harbor long histories and deep-rooted craftsmanship. I had always secretly hoped that we could one day showcase the greatest high jewelry from Italy in the exceptional city of Kyoto. It was an honor to host this special celebratory gala within the Kyoto State Guest House’s who embodies in its mesmerizing architecture the respect of tradition combined with the contemporary use of technologies, a true bridge between past and future. Tonight we have also enriched our senses thanks to the magical performance of Tamasaburo san. National Living Treasure and symbol of the universal beauty and elegance of Japan. To represent Italy we were also proud to have welcomed Nicola Piovani, able to balance lightness and deepness as expression the Italian joy of living. They perfectly signified the wonderful encounter between Kyoto and Italy.”
Bando Tamasaburo, one of Kabuki’s most celebrated actors and National Living Treasure, performed a special dance ahead of the celebratory VIP dinner and gave the following comment.
“I am highly honored to have been given this opportunity to perform a dance at the gala dinner celebrating the great tradition of Bvlgari high jewelry at the Kyoto State Guest House. The dance I performed today was to the classic Jiuta song “Yuki (‘snow’)” from the Kansai region. The song is about a wistful story in which a woman who has renounced the world thinks about her past lover. It isn’t solely a song of sadness; I feel that what it depicts is somewhat similar to the transparency you feel when gazing at a jewel.”
The dinner was prepared by Luca Fantin, the Michelin-starred Executive Chef of BVLGARI Il Ristorante Luca Fantin.
Fantin’s motto is to offer an amazing sensory experience to guests by presenting dishes in a way that simulates their gustatory, visual, and olfactory senses, and he successfully demonstrated his exquisite presentation skills at the Kyoto State Guest House that evening, satiating the hearts and souls of those who enjoyed his meal.
To celebrate this cultural exchange between Kyoto and Italy, Oscar Winner pianist-composer Nicola Piovani delighted guests with his timeless and elegant compositions, which reflects the joy of living of Italy and BVLGARI alike. Keiji Tanaka, Governor of Kyoto, who attended this special event, gave the following comment:
“It’s a great honor for a top global brand like Bvlgari to have chosen Kyoto for the location of their first-ever special cultural exchange event in Asia. Kyoto is a city that continues to create cutting-edge technologies and services using tradition as its foundation, without necessarily being weighed down by it. I hope that this special event paves the way for further exchange between Kyoto and Italy.”
Daisaku Kadokawa, Mayor of Kyoto, who also attended this special event, gave the following comment: “Bvlgari continues to mesmerize people around the world by creating cutting-edge designs while valuing tradition. Just like the philosophy upheld by your company, Kyoto has continued to develop as a city by making repeated innovations on top of its tradition, which is why I feel respect and a sense of affinity towards Bvlgari’s corporate philosophy. Today’s cultural encounter between Italy and Kyoto is indeed a great opportunity for new innovation. I hope that it brings forth a new type of culture that spreads throughout the world.”
The actress Koyuki, invited to celebrate with BVLGARI this one of a kind experience, gave the following comment: “I am honored to have been invited to such a unique and special celebratory moment, thanks to a long- term relationship with BVLGARI. The Kyoto State Guest House, which I had the pleasure of visiting for the first time, had a wonderful atmosphere that enhanced the beauty of Bvlgari’s high jewelry. It was a deeply memorable evening just like a dream. Kyoto is a magical place where elegance, color and beauty on history and culture are particularly celebrated in spring, during the Sakura blooming season and it makes you want to visit again and again.”
Originating in Rome BVLGARI was founded as jewelry shop in 1884 by greek silversmith Sotirio Bulgari. With passionate skills and vision he set the stage for BVLGARI to become a permanent emblements of Italian excellence. For the 130 years thereafter, BVLGARI ceaseless creativity, formidable history of innovation and craftsmanship and a bold pioneering spirit led the jewelry house to become a legend.
Kyoto and BVLGARI both represent passion, respect, admiration and inspiration coming from the highest level of historical craftsmanship. BVLGARI design is nourished by deep Roman roots, entrenched in an inspiring past. This same respect for history, art, design and architecture are celebrated in Kyoto in different shapes and form representing the history of Japan.
The beauty within the stone – what truly makes them one-of-a-kind, is at the heart of every BVLGARI design. The beauty of details and harmony of space is celebrated in every breath at Kyoto Gehinkan.
BVLGARI sincerely hopes that those shared common values of beauty continue to spread throughout the world.
SOURCE: Kyoto State Guest House – Bvlgari Japan Ltd.