ART MEETS ARCHITECTURE, FOOD, AND DRINK
Open from 10am to midnight during the four days of Art Week Tokyo, the AWT Bar provides the city’s art community a convivial gathering place in the heart of trendy Minami-Aoyama. Art Week Tokyo commissions an emerging architect to design the bar space, selects one of the city’s top young chefs to produce new food creations for the menu, and invites featured artists to conceive original cocktails. Engaging all the senses, these commissions further deepen Art Week Tokyo’s synergy with other creative fields as well as Tokyo’s globally celebrated hospitality culture.
ARCHITECTURE: SUZUKO YAMADA
Make a bar. The first image that comes to mind is a bar with a row of stools and some lights floating overhead. Then come the drinkers sitting next to each other, glasses in hand, and a bartender mixing cocktails behind the counter. A bar is a space made by things and by people.
Things have all kinds of outlines, around which air circulates; and all those lines come together to generate both the flow and blockage of air. With this project, I want to isolate those outlines. Following the contours of all the things that compose the intimate space of a bar are 13-millimeter-thick steel rods, tracing outlines in the air. The empty space expands and contracts, as converging lines form the beginnings of depth perception.
Unlike planes and solids, lines do not have a strong relationship with their surroundings. Instead, they activate multiple possibilities around them. They can make a place appear open or confined, unified or disjointed. Our perceptions of a site constantly change depending on where we stand and the number of other people with us. Rather than letting things define the site, I envision lines coming together in a way that prompts each person to perceive the site for themselves.
Guests will set their drinks in holders extending from the bar. The rows of cocktail glasses suspended together in the air will add the finishing touch to this fleeting gathering place.
FOOD: SHINSUKE ISHII
Japan is known for the changing beauty of its landscapes over the course of the year, while Japanese cuisine has long placed an emphasis on making use of seasonal ingredients grown in distinctive terrains. The country’s culinary treasure trove needs protecting, and I often use my cooking to actively address environmental issues that concern food. For this special menu for the AWT Bar I have conceived three plates of finger food—each pairing a savory item with a sweet—inspired by the Japanese landscapes I love: forest, sea, and mountain.
— Shinsuke Ishii, Owner and Chef, Sincere
Monaka wafer shell filled with pork rillettes and stewed beef cheek. This charming treat marries a classic French appetizer with a traditional Japanese confection.
Sweet Potato Tuile
Baked sweet potato paste with fragrant pain d’épices and rum accents, squeezed into a crisp wafer cylinder.
Bone-shaped cookie blackened over bamboo charcoal and topped with a tartare of bycatch dressed with lemon oil and saffron mayonnaise. Sounding the alarm about Japan’s depleted fisheries, this twist on the canapé is intended to leave a slightly dark impression.
Chocolate shell filled with coffee-flavored ganache and a touch of black shichimi spice blend from Kyoto.
Muscat Foie Gras
Mousse of foie gras blended with a hint of muscat jam and coated in cacao butter to resemble a grape.
Madeleine baked from a batter mixed with Amazonian cacao and candied chestnuts. The cacao is supplied by Tetsuo Ota, another chef who is thinking about the future of food.
MASATO KOBAYASHI: LEMON COCKTAIL ON THIS PLANET
I make paintings on this planet with the paint of this planet, and that’s how I envision making a cocktail too. I have lemons and limes growing outside my studio overlooking the Seto Inland Sea! See what happens when you put a (triangular or square) piece of a painting in your mouth…
Gin, fresh Setouchi lemon juice, Canadou Carib, dried fruit garnish
SAORI MIYAKE: NOWHERE IN BLUE
During the height of the pandemic, when the world seemed to have come to a standstill, I started going for walks in gardens and forests. As I wandered around looking at trees and rivers, I would suddenly be struck by a feeling that the landscape encompassing me was a kind of nowhere place. I had been experimenting with cyanotypes for some time without ever really exhibiting them anywhere and then one day, as though guided by sunlight, the photographs, AI-generated imagery, and native plants that I had been toying around with all came together: It was as if that nowhere place appeared right before my eyes in the form of a blueprint. That image is the inspiration for this light blue cocktail.
Absinthe, iced butterfly pea flower tea, soda
Shinji Ohmaki: Vacuum Fluctuation
An invisible, spectral wave unfolds in infinite space. Vacuum fluctuation was the first phenomenon at the creation of the universe. Space was born when a single point of light inflated so acutely that it overtook the darkness.
I want to give people a sense of the new worlds that form when light and dark slowly merge in space-like silence.
Blavod black vodka, Aphrodite Black, fresh grapefruit juice, clear jelly