Prototyping in Tokyo: Illustrating Design-Led Innovation at Japan House London 1000x450


Prototyping in Tokyo: Illustrating design-led innovation presents the innovative designs created by world-renowned design engineer and Professor at the University of Tokyo, Yamanaka Shunji.

The exhibition explores the potential of prototypes to act as a link between cutting-edge technology and society, offering us a glimpse into the structures and textures of the future.

An example of such prototypes is ‘Ready to Crawl’, a series of robots which are ‘born’ fully formed just like a living thing. Their parts are created all at the same time, fully assembled, and with form and movement that closely mirrors living things.

The exhibition presents three core themes for visitors to explore: ‘Prosthetics’ is a range of interpretations of the “expanded human body”; ‘Bio-likeness robots’ are robots with life-like motion and behaviour, giving the impression of intelligence; and ‘Additive Manufacturing’ is the taking of prototyping to the next level with 3-D printing which has allowed engineers and designers to create infinitely more complex prototypes.

Visit the exhibition to enjoy learning the stories behind the prototypes and interacting with displays.

About Professor Yamanaka Shunji

Founder of Leading Edge Design and Professor at the University of Tokyo, Professor Yamanaka Shunji is one of the most respected design engineers in Japan, with previous works ranging from wristwatches to railway carriages. Recently, Yamanaka’s projects include beautiful prosthetics and life-like robots that re-examine the relationship between humans and machines. Numerous honours include: the 2004 Mainichi Design Award, the iF Design Award, and multiple Good Design Awards (backed by the Japan Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Infrastructure). His 2010 work, Tagtype Garage Kit, is part of the New York Museum of Modern Art’s permanent collection.

The University of Tokyo logo Japan-UK Season of Culture 2019-2020 at Japan House London