Archipelago-townYoshiko Sato, 1960-2012

Yoshiko Sato left us last Sunday, February 5, 2012. She was 52 years old, even though her age always seemed almost an incident not worth bothering about during her entire life. Yoshiko Sato was a u...

Yoshiko Sato left us last Sunday, February 5, 2012.

She was 52 years old, even though her age always seemed almost an incident not worth bothering about during her entire life.

Yoshiko Sato was a unique designer: she had the unique gift of designing ‘things’ of astonishing beauty.

Objects of instant desire.

One wanted to take them and bring them home.

Object with an exotic, oriental quality that only a japanese could conceive, or visualize and make them real.

Yoshiko Sato was not a talker. She was a maker. A maker of unprecedented grace, as anyone can see by looking at her website or through the web.

Here is I remember her.

ko.ko

she was my first ‘American’ desk mate
she was like no one else I’d met before
she was like no one else I’ve met since

she was ‘ancient’ Japan and ‘ancient’ New York all in one
she was one and many, like the many words she never said
that gave meaning to her gaze which, like the rest of her gentle body,
kept moving naturally, restlessly, yet effortlessly

she was soft-spoken and quiet
rendered peaceful by the boldness of her mind
and the infinity of her aspirations

she was, for a few of us, a ‘Virgil’
being senior of many years to most of our class
young Turks restlessly looking for our footing
while she never seemed to doubt hers
and lost little time in explain how this could be

she seemed both at home and at odds
too wise to have an interest in IT
too Japanese to stomach American corporate culture

she had exquisite taste and astonishing manual skills
which made her appear able to turn any program,
even a dog-house, into a Japanese diagram of bewildering grace

she thought the beautiful objects she was after
were the only thing worth bothering about

she wasn’t verbally articulate
as she was a typical Cooper product
perhaps a necessary pause, a keen sense of materiality instilled in her

she was one of a kind in a class rich with many talents
some true, some not

she was the only one truth to herself, and to her countries, adopted and natural
she was an invisible beacon of light
perhaps too light for the digital world

her parents named her yo.shi.ko
but we called her Ko.ko
like coco chanel