It has been a commonly held principle by Italian craftsmen that work should be carried out con diligenza, con studio and con amore; that is, with diligence, study and love. This is an ethic at BD that we aspire and strive to emulate in our work. We look to the great sushi masters, known as Itamae in Japan. It takes up to 20 years to reach the zenith of the sushi chefs. The creation of sushi is an art, and has colourful stories associated with it. A Japanese legend states that the truly great itamae-san ('san' means honourary) should be able to create 'nigirizushi' in which all of the rice grains face the same direction.
The most important lesson this process of mastery teaches us is that first we must "Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist" in the words of Pablo Picasso.
The recent viral like success of Alexander McQueen's exhibition 'Savage Beauty' at the V&A honoured this creative process. McQueen trained as a tailor on Savile Row from the age of 15. He studied and and absorbed the intricacies of fine tailoring and then applied his brilliant creativity to produce collections that will be remembered forever. His passion, knowledge, dedication and uncompromising vision resulted in shows which were works of art. He was a master of story-telling.
The exhibition was brilliantly curated by the V&A's team making every room feel like an all-consuming theatrical experience. The whole exhibition felt 100% experimental and almost emotionally overwhelming in its reflection of McQueen's creative process.
One of McQueen's most famous quotes was "Give me time and I will give you a revolution". Even after his untimely death, his mastery, dedication and passion lives on. A true itamae-san.
Images: © Victoria and Albert Museum, London