Garden Eight is a multi-award-winning digital production team from Japan specialising in visual design, web design and web development. Founded in Asakusabashi, Tokyo in 2011, the studio has just opened their European headquarters in Copenhagen.
The Nordics are known as the world’s “unicorn factory” per capita outside of Silicon Valley and have enjoyed a spotlight on their technologies from one of the world’s technological frontrunners Japan. Over the past 5 years, there have been 57 large-scale Japanese investments in the Nordics.
Design is a field where both regions have a unique historical and cultural heritage, and now Japanese digital design has just landed in the Nordics with Garden Eight’s establishment.
Award winning design
Before even landing in Europe, Garden Eight have won ‘Site of the Day’ 15 times from Awwwards, and ‘FWA of the Day’ 10 times from FWA – (Favourite Website Awards), whose international team of over 300 judges from 35+ countries vote daily on submitted projects. They have also been nominated for ‘Studio of the Year’ from Awwwards – the professional web design and development competition body whose jury consists of multidisciplinary designers, developers, journalists, and agencies from across the globe.
Natsuko Sakai is Garden Eight’s European Director, and explains why they chose the Nordics as their first base outside of Japan in a press release:
“Europe and the US both have excellent web design. The EU has a lot of countries and cultures and is a melting pot of talent and design. Our team travelled to London, Barcelona, Paris and New York to take a closer look but we never felt completely convinced. And then we all quickly fell in love with Denmark.”
Citing the similarities to the design philosophy of Japan, Garden Eight noted a delicate balance of beauty and functionality – seen all around in Nordic furniture, architecture, and city design – all beautiful, comfortable and human-centric. Natsuko Sakai explains:
“There is a perfect match to the Japanese way of thinking – an originality in the minimalism of a concept. Danes are very warm and caring to others. Denmark has a very deep understanding of what it is to be human – and this is at the heart of its design-centered approach. The Danish design thinking and human-centered approach to innovation certainly played a role in our decision to locate in Denmark”
The company currently looking for new projects with companies & brands – as well as new designer and front-end developer colleagues in Copenhagen.