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On the night when the full moon appears
Clams rise to the sea surface
They open their shell to collect moonlight



According to Eastern folklore, it was believed that these shimmering beauties were the tears of the full moon, collected by the clams on the night that the moon was as it’s fullest. This poetic interpretation highlights the enduring human fascination with the moon, especially in this phase, arguably when it’s effect is felt the most. There are parties to celebrate it, festivals take place when it falls, and often cited as the time when most new life comes into the world. Traditionally, it is a time in which, across the world, people take the time to stop and acknowledge the powerful effect the moon has on our planet.

Like the glowing orb in the nighttime sky, pearls have had a potent pull on people. The beauty of these gems from the sea are recorded in some of Japan’s oldest books. Many a haiku has been penned to describe their mysterious and dreamy nature, inspiring artists for centuries. Their allure has made them highly desirable and sought after.

Historically in Japan, the guardians of these prized gems, were the Ama women (as shown here). Ama, which literally means ‘women of the sea’, can be traced back to 750. These mermaid like ladies of Japan were free divers who made their living diving to depths of up to 25 metres, without using any breathing apparatus. Today, due to the advances in pearl cultivation techniques, this tradition has died out and yet, not forgotten.

On the night when the moon is at it’s fullest, we invite you to presentation of pearls within the Eastern context, hosted by jewellery designer Mariko Tsuchiyama who is presenting her new collection. Mariko currently lives in Nagasaki, a city well known for it’s pearls, and is taking residence in our Boutique for the week of the full moon phase. Our modest exhibition takes place in conjunction with the premier of the evening soiree series, Listening to Scent.

[ About Mariko Tsuchiyama ]

Nature tells us stories in its colours, texture, shapes and proportions instead of verbal explanations. Mariko is inspired by the inherent beauty of pearls, gem stones and metal. This collection addresses the sensuality of nature images - the ocean’s tide, the play of the leaves in the breeze, the gleam of the moonlight in the sky or dripping rain. All her materials are selected and hand finished by herself in studios across Asia and Europe. Her jewellery can be found in selected lifestyle stores and galleries in Berlin, Hong Kong and Japan. She uses pearls cultured in farms from her home town of Nagasaki, Japan.


with Mariko Tsuchiyama


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