Shelly, my lovely and fantastic intern was recently in NYC and visited Gallery Hanahou and I asked her to write a blog post about her visit. Here it is:
First you have to get the street name right… HOWston… not Houston and Broadway… Then you have to actually find the small entrance to this large building (the Cable Building in SOHO), which I walked by at least twice before going in!
Once I was there I was shocked, you are walking by all of these small businesses and then BAM! You make it into the tiny Gallery Hanahou. “Amazing” was the first word out of my mouth as I walked into a bustling Parson’s Workshop led by Shoichi Ishizawa (the President himself!). The walls, ceilings, radiator and floor are completely covered with creations in the show titled “Before and After” created by the Japanese group Ossu! Shugeibu that translates into: Yo! Crafting Club.
I of course had to introduce myself to some of the gallery people milling about as I had met Koko the previous weekend at Schmancy’s Plush You! Show in Seattle. Koko was completely surprised to see me since I totally forgot to mention I was headed to NYC… ha ha. Koko walked me around the show and I noticed that nothing was really for sale, NONE of the toys/crafts were for sale?! What!? But the passion of Ishizawa is for everyone to be able to craft these incredible toys on their own, hence all the instructions on the walls! Cool.
Walking around and checking out all of the interestingly usable objects I think my favorites must be the umbrella birds and the “don’t buy Fake!” tea kettle cover. Let me tell you if you are at all crafty this show was a definite push to go home and make something!