Winner: Homeware design of the year 2022. Kathleen Reilly has designed Oku in Tsubame City, Japan.
This project is a new knife design carefully produced in collaboration with highly skilled craftsmen in Tsubame City – an area renowned for over 400 years of metalworking in Niigata Prefecture, Japan.
Influenced by traditional Japanese place setting and arrangement, Oku has a unique folded handle that elevates its function, allowing it to interact with objects on the table in new ways.
Oku's innovative form utilises generations-old manufacturing techniques and promotes locally sourced materials and craft skills to challenge centuries-old traditions of Western tableware.
"Functional yet unconventional, Oku introduces a refined aesthetic that breathes new life into the dining space," added designer Kathleen Reilly.
Judges comments: "Oku has a certain humour to it while being beautiful and innovative. The design has an elegant integration of form and function. It is a beautiful, honest and delicate design – the way the knife and the block work together has a kind of unified function that is expressed through the form of each."
Designer: Kathleen Reilly