Canadian designer Jean de Lessard has transformed the interior of Kinoya Japanese restaurant in Montreal.
For its latest Kinoya, interior designer Jean de Lessard has tapped into the sources to emulate in his design the primary spirit, function and aesthetics of the izakaya, as the latter was originally an informal place where people drank beer and sake. The transformation is particularly unusual that it explores through extreme design intimacy in relationships between people, making of Kinoya a true representation of the unique approach the designer has developed about the different ways of occupying a space.
In Japan, an izakaya is a place of socialization and of stress alleviation. Here at Kinoya, the narrow space forces to relate to one another, under his/her unavoidable gaze. The design has the West and the Far East (East Asia) beliefs about community spirit, closeness and brotherhood collide in a fun and joyful manner.
“For a space to become Event or Emotion, it must generate its own energy. I designed an enclosed space that is totally focused on the business of partying. The design elements are deliberately oppressive or aggressive, so that it is anarchic, rough and where we are loudly heckled”, explains Jean de Lessard. The vertical drop of 4 to 5 feet between the front and rear parts of the ceiling contributes to the cocoon effect.
The space, such as how one could figure what the interior of origami looks like, is composed of triangles of various sizes, crookedly placed in a random fashion. “Jean told me what he wanted to feel in this place. Where one had to be cramped also. It’s a fantasy cave where people are in a constant visual exploration mode”, says artist carpenter Dominic Samson, Solution durable, who built the structure, a piece of work he’s proud of and that he describes as uplifting.