In contrast to the gloriously eclectic wonderland of the Tate Modern shop, Tate Edit is an industrially simple, understated space offering a carefully curated range of products, including classic design works; furniture, tableware and cutlery as found around the gallery, and favourite pieces hand-picked by the Tate team.
Around a quarter of the 200 or so items available are chosen by a rolling programme of guest editors. Jasper Morrison, who designed the retail space in collaboration with architects Herzog & de Meuron, made the first edit, and at the end of April, the mantle passes to Momoko Mizutani.
Japan-born curator and retailer Mizutani opened Momosan Shop on Wilton Way, Hackney in 2014, aiming to create somewhere she could showcase and sell creative homewares and objects made by skilled independent craftspeople – somewhere akin to the pottery shops of her native Japan.
"I found it difficult to find really special gifts and there were not many shops selling authentic Japanese products at the time," explains Momoko. "There are so many pottery shops in Japan where you can find up-and-coming potters’ work for a reasonable price, but when I tried to find that sort of thing in London, it was quite difficult. I wanted to build a place where you can find unique and special pieces created by skilled craftsmen and women."
In the three years since it opened, Momosan Shop has become one of East London’s most cherished local secrets, stocking an ever-evolving range of functional crafted objects from Japan, the UK and further afield, each selected with Mizutani’s detail-orientated eye. The pieces include a variety of materials, from glassware and ceramics to brass and cast iron metalwork, as well as carved wood and bark.
When it came to choosing their second editor, the Tate Edit team looked for someone who embodied the store’s mission to be "a shop that has art at its heart but also represents the Tate Modern aesthetic of industrial beauty, offering functional objects that embody Tate style". Momosan Shop was the perfect match.
"I saw this as a great opportunity to showcase some of the makers and designers I have had the privilege to have met and collaborated with," adds Momoko. "First and foremost, I’m attracted to originality. Something that cannot be replicated without the skilled hand of a trained craftsman/woman. Something which reflects the personality of the maker, that speaks to me, that makes me smile."
The Momosan Shop edit will be available at Tate Edit and online from 28 April until September 2017, when the next guest editor reveals their selection. Visit shop.tate.org.uk for more information.