His lights, favoured by architects and individuals alike for the quality of the craftsmanship, are now found throughout Japan in hotels, restaurants, and private homes. We spoke with him in the serene setting of his studio in Nara City, just outside of Osaka. Covering everything from what goes into creating some of these unique lights and how he applies his pottery-like philosophy to this illuminating sector of interior design.
ACM: Can you tell us how you got interested in lighting in the first place?
HN: The first time I became interested in lighting was when I was a student living in an old apartment building. I went to a DIY store and bought sockets, cords, and other things, and made a couple of pendant lights for my flat. I thought, well, lighting is surprisingly easy to make if you have a bit of knowledge of the various parts.
So I got interested in lighting. I started making floor stands and modified a few different lamps. I’ve always liked motorbikes, so I started out making my own customised lighting in the same way.
This was when you were at university, right? What was your major?
I studied architecture. After graduation, I worked in a small design office, but after about six months I realised that I didn't have the right talent for architecture.