Wataru Tanabe Studio has created an ascetic version of a European coffee shop in Japanese. 

A new Ethicus Theleema coffee shop has opened in the Izu-Kogen mountain resort in Japan, the restrained interior of which was designed by designer Wataru Tanabe. The owners of the cafe plan to use it as an exhibition space where you can see the works of local artists and craftsmen. 

Минималистское кафе в Японии

Photo: Hideki Makiguchi 

In order not to divide a small hall with an area of 50 m2 into exhibition and restaurant zones, Tanabe has developed a universal solution: the cafe is designed in such a way that its interior can be quickly transformed for any temporary exhibition or event. The designer filled the laconic space of the white cube format with expressive sculptural objects that stand out against the background of monochrome concrete walls and floors. 

Минималистское кафе в Японии

Photo: Hideki Makiguchi 

Минималистское кафе в Японии

Photo: Hideki Makiguchi 

A rounded stand made of polished steel has taken center stage; its shining surface echoes the metal podiums replacing the benches. Their cool shine and correct geometry are balanced by textured walls and columns made of concrete, a monolithic boulder stool, benches and tables made of solid logs. The untouched natural beauty of stone and wood makes a particularly strong impression due to the contrast with the sterile context. 

Минималистское кафе в Японии

Photo: Hideki Makiguchi 

Минималистское кафе в Японии

Photo: Hideki Makiguchi 

According to the designer’s idea, any of the furnishings here is multifunctional. So, massive stools and tables can serve as exhibition tables. The same logic is followed by the design of benches: low podiums can be used as showcases, and with the help of flat pillows resembling traditional tatami, they can be turned into comfortable seats.

Минималистское кафе в Японии

Photo: Hideki Makiguchi 

Минималистское кафе в Японии

Photo: Hideki Makiguchi 

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