Boaz Cohen, 33, and Sayaka Yamamoto, 27, may hail from two very different worlds—Cohen from outside Tel Aviv, Yamamoto from a small village near Osaka—but as BCXSY they’ve found a unique way of bridging the cultural gap. With their home base an abandoned elementary school in Eindhoven, the Netherlands city where they met as design students in 2006, the couple have spent the past year and a half traveling the globe in search of indigenous crafts to study and then subvert. In Tokyo, for instance, they collaborated with a local woodworker to reinterpret the traditional Japanese screen; their version (above) is rendered in pale hinoki cypress wood. This spring in Milan the pair unveiled their newest project: a series of graphic carpets woven by Bedouin women in Israel. “By showing people how traditional crafts can be expressed in a contemporary way,” says Cohen, “we’re trying to make it a little easier for them to appreciate the things that really last” (bcxsy.com).
Photo courtesy of the designers