Maki Okamoto is an applied artist living and working in Sweden. She explores the fields of corpus and contemporary jewellery with a sculptural approach. Her interest lies in creating objects that interact with the user. By transforming daily objects such as a fork or a spoon, she challenges the user to experience these pieces from a very different perspective.
What have you rebelled against in the past, and what are you rebelling against now?
In my work I often question the main functions of an object. I try to reveal other meanings and functions in the object. In that way I am rebelling against the normative reading of objects in my surrounding.
Do you need to be a rebel to enjoy your cutlery?
I do not really think you need to be a rebel, but you need to be open for what can happen between you and the cutlery, and your surrounding.
Do you use your own cutlery?
Not for the daily use. I use them for special occasions.
Do you think cutlery can still be improved? if yes, in what way?
Yes, I want to continue making new cutlery together with clients out of their old cutlery. By doing this they become more personal.
What was the inspiration for your Steinbeisser series?
I was inspired by a bunch of old cutlery that lay on my working bench. They looked like something more than just utensils, just like how looking at a familiar alphabet character for long time can make it look weird and exotic.
Describe your work in 3 words!
Borderless functional objects.
What kind of materials do you use and where do you get them from?
I mostly use old nickel silver cutlery from antique shops in Stockholm. Sometimes I use cutlery that I have inherited from my husbands grandmother. I also work with cutlery that come from the customers own family.
What are you working on right now?
I am currently continuing a work series called ”Speglingar” which I exhibited in Stockholm last spring. I am challenging myself to make new work in a bigger scale and with new techniques.
What excites you about tomorrow?
I get exited about words and questions from my four years old child, who has a lot of curiosity and opinions.
What has been your favourite dinner experience?
My favourite dinner experience so far must have been the hot pot dinner I had with my school friends whom all came from same home country. We shared joyful and difficult experiences of living in a foreign country, at the same time as we shared our soul food from a big pot.
What further ambitions do you have?
I want to collaborate more with other artists from other fields. It is so interesting to develop new ways of working that can give new perspectives on life, and reach new audiences.
Which are your 3 favourite pieces on Jouw…?
My favourite pieces on Jouw… are the Little Driftwood Spoon by Stuart Cairns, the Burnt Wood Plates by Jasmin Matzakow and the Thorn Flat Spoon by Sharon Adams.