The town of Aoya is located in the area of Tottori historically known as Inaba. This town, with its mild climate and lush environment, has been a production center of Tottori’s high-quality, traditional Japanese paper, Inshu washi, for centuries.
Washi is made from plant fibers such as paper mulberry, and relies on fresh and clean river waters. The history of Inshu washi can be traced back to the Nara Period (710–794), though its origins likely begin even farther back. Government records from the Heian Period show that Inshu washi was offered to the Imperial court from the province of Inaba, and later, during the Edo Period, Inshu washi was widely used by the clan leaders as well as the general populace. Though demand has declined with the introduction of modern paper production techniques, Inshu washi remains nevertheless sought-after for its superior quality, unique warmth, beautiful texture, and durability as a construction and crafting material.
AOYA combines the ancient traditions of Inshu washi and respect for nature with modern design and technologies, creating washi products that enrich the lives of people living in the modern age.
The three-dimensional surface of AOYA’s Inshu washi lamps defies the presumption that paper is a flat surface. Their revolutionary technique for creating the seamless, free form curves of their products was created after years of research and is the first of its kind in the world. Light passing through the fibers of paper mulberry is soft, warm, and together with its natural texture, brings a sense of relaxation to any space that soothes the soul.