Made in Yame is a three-week intensive product design program that takes you deep into the cultural heart of Japan. Study with the finest craftspeople, visit ancient temples and shrines and relish the food, architecture and landscape of this extraordinary country.

Made in Yame does not have a traditional, classroom-based curriculum. Field trips and visits to workshops and factories allow participants to become familiar with a craft technique, its traditional applications and the historical and cultural context in which the technique arose. Participants will be asked to maintain a sketchbook throughout the program and to sketch product concepts for every process they see.

Please keep in mind the following itinerary may be affected based on the needs of the group.

Introduction to Japan in Fukuoka City

2 Days

Fukuoka City is the fifth largest and fastest growing city in Japan. Some might say it is the Seattle or Brooklyn of Japan. It provides an immersive experience of modern-day Japan's amazing architecture, technology, infrastructure, food and shopping; and it is home to fine museums that will introduce us to the history of Japan and its cultural traditions. 

Day 1— Fukuoka City (Saturday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel lobby

  • 09:30    Field trip to Kyushu National Museum
  • 13:00     Lunch
  • 14:00     Trip to temple or shrine
  • 16:00     Free time
  • 19:00     Welcome dinner

Day 2— Fukuoka City to Yame (Sunday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel lobby
  • 10:00     Field trip to Fukuoka Asian Art Museum
  • 13:00     Lunch
  • 13:30     Drive to Yame
  • 15:00     Check into Yame Green Hotel
  • 16:30     Tour Kitaya Sake brewery
  • 18:00     Dinner

Craft Research and Design Sketching in Yame City 

5 Days

In our first five days in Yame, we will be exposed to a broad spectrum of traditional craft techniques, workshops and factories. Participants will maintain sketchbooks wherein they rigorously explore new product concepts for each process that they see. We will also visit local sites that continue to inspire and inform us about Japan's cultural history.

Day 3— Yame (Monday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel lobby
  • 09:30    Yame Craft Museum
  • 11:30      Tour washi paper workshop
  • 13:00     Lunch
  • 14:00     Tour paper/silk lantern factory
  • 16:00     Tour bow & arrow workshop
  • 17:00     Walking tour of downtown and local temples
  • 18:00     Studio sketching and dinner at Old County Office

Day 4— Yame (Tuesday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel Lobby: A Day with Jogo-san
  • 09:30    Tour wood shop
  • 12:00     Tour lacquer showroom
  • 12:30     Lunch
  • 13:15      See urushi & maki-e painting and metal engraving
  • 16:00     Sketching and dinner at Old County Office

Day 5— Yame (Wednesday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel Lobby
  • 09:30    Tour stone workshop
  • 11:30      Tour spinning top factory
  • 13:00     Lunch
  • 14:30     Tour of kasuri weaving factory
  • 17:00     Sketching and dinner at Old County Office

Day 6— Yame (Thursday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel lobby: A day with Konomi-san
  • 09:30    Field trip to green tea fields
  • 10:30     Drive to Tsuhime shrine in the mountains
  • 13:00     Lunch
  • 15:00     Tea ceremony at Konomien 
  • 17:00      Sketching and dinner at Old County Office

Day 7— Yame to Arita (Friday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel lobby/check out
  • 09:30    Drive to Arita, Saga Prefecture
  • 11:00      Meet Takada-san
  • 11:30      Tour Izumiyama porcelain clay quarry
  • 12:15      Lunch
  • 14:00     Tour Arita porcelain factory
  • 16:00     Tour shrine with porcelain gate
  • 18:00     Check into onsen ryokan
  • 19:00     Dinner

Inspirational Trip to Arita and Kyoto

5 Days 

After 5 days in Yame, designers will depart for a day to scenic Arita, birthplace of Japan’s porcelain industry, in neighboring Saga Prefecture. They
will visit the old porcelain quarry, a local porcelain factory and many shops and ceramic studios where they can see how traditional ceramic techniques and forms are being updated for modern tastes.

Kyoto is the cultural heart of Japan and was its capital for centuries. A four day trip to Kyoto will give designers a deep experience of historic and urban Japan and provide inspiration for their own work. Shrines and temples, gardens, museums, restaurants and shops selling everything from kimonos and lacquerware to robots and Pokemon reveal the delicacy, complexity and endless style with which the Japanese reconcile the old and the new, the traditional with the innovative. Kyoto is a magical city unlike any other. 

Day 8— Arita to Kyoto (Saturday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel lobby
  • 10:00     Shop at Arita ceramics outlet
  • 12:00     Train to Fukuoka
  • 14:00     Shinkansen to Kyoto
  • 18:00     Check into Kyoto hotel
  • 19:00     Dinner

Day 9— Kyoto (Sunday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel lobby
  •               Meet Kyoto instructor
  • 10:00     Tour Arashima Bamboo forest
  • 11:30      Tour Kinkaku-ji
  • 13:00     Lunch 
  • 14:00     Tour Fushimi Inari Taisha
  • 16:00     Tea
  • 18:00     Dinner

Day 10— Kyoto (Monday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel lobby
  •               A day of temples and shrines 
  • 18:00     Dinner

Day 11— Kyoto (Tuesday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel lobby
  • 09:30     Visit Kawai Kanjirou Memorial 
  • 11:00       Visit Kyoto National Museum 
  • 13:00      Lunch
  • 14:00      Shopping
  • 18:00      Dinner

Day 12— Kyoto to Yame (Wednesday

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel lobby/check out
  • 13:00      Shinkansen to Fukuoka
  • 16:00      Drive to Yame
  • 17:00      Check in to Green Hotel
  • 18:00      Sketching and dinner at Old County Office

Design Refinement in Yame

6 Days 

The program concludes with 6 days back in Yame where designers will move through a refined sketching phase and choose one product for development. They will work closely with the instructors and crafts people to create mock-ups and the documentation necessary for a prototype to be made.

It is unlikely that a final prototype can be finished before the program is complete and the participants return home. Finished prototypes will be shipped to New York City for review by MoMA Wholesale. 

Day 13— Yame (Thursday)

  • 09:00    Meet in hotel lobby
  • 09.30    Visit to Craft Museum
  • 12:00     Walk around town
  • 13:00     Lunch
  • 14:00     Sketching and prototyping at Old County Office
  •               Afternoon can be used to make individual trips back to craft shops

Day 14— Yame (Friday)

  • Day of rest. Trip to mountain hotspring or Fukuoka beach

Day 15— Yame (Saturday)

  • All day sketching and prototyping in Old County Office

  • Can be used to make individual trips back to craft shops

Day 16— Yame (Sunday)

  • All day sketching and prototyping in Old County Office
  • Can be used to make individual trips back to craft shops

Day 17— Yame (Monday)

  • Final presentation of models to team of designers, instructors, craftsmen and other stakeholders
  • Farewell dinner

Day 18— Yame (Tuesday)

  • Travel home