Pantechnicon – a 200-year-old former warehouse on Motcomb Street in London’s Belgravia that opened in 2020 as a destination for Nordic and Japanese creativity and craft – has unveiled a vibrant plant-filled artwork by botanical artist Satoshi Kawamoto, to mark the opening of its new restaurant, Sachi. 

The installation is a celebration of nature and an unexpected discovery as visitors enter the restaurant, set in the basement of the five-storey building. ‘I wanted to create something that would make visitors want to explore further inside the Pantechnicon,’ explains Kawamoto. 

Satoshi Kawamoto creating his plant installation at Sachi restaurant at the Pantechnicon in London
Kawamoto working on the installation, which is composed of fresh and dry foliage and will be refreshed over time

‘The building itself is truly imposing. Our challenge, therefore, was to create an interior that was not daunting to our guests,’ states co-founder and director of Pantechnicon, Barry Hirst. As a response, Kawamoto created a bespoke plant installation that welcomes guests as they pass through the entrance of the Nordic-Japanese restaurant. 

‘I aimed to create something that was connected to the building. An artwork that speaks to the upper floors,’ says the plant guru. ‘You usually don’t expect anything living in the basement. So, having planting here brings life to the space,’ he adds. 

Satoshi Kawamoto creating his plant installation at Sachi restaurant at the Pantechnicon in London, photography Andrew Urwin
Detail of the arrangement, which greets visitors as they descend to the basement-level restaurant. Photography: Andrew Urwin

The display is a vibrant combination of fresh and dry foliage that gradually changes over time to gives visitors a slightly different experience every time they come. This also ties in with Kawamoto’s motto, ‘the garden was not built in a day’. Bringing a wealth of textures together, the artwork is a playful ‘three-dimensional arrangement’ that draws inspiration from the intricate cloud details seen on Japanese kimonos. 

‘We invited Satoshi to create this installation because he pushes the limits of his artistry within his practice,’ states Hirst. Born and raised in Japan, Kawamoto is a creative director, spatial designer and founder of Green Fingers Market – a charming green boutique with stores in Tokyo, Milan and New York. 

Detail of botanical installation by Satoshi Kawamoto at Sachi, photography Andrew Urwin
Detail of the installation. Photography: Andrew Urwin

Through his work he aims to shift the way people interact with and interpret plants in interior spaces. He has designed installations worldwide for fashion giants such as Prada, a London boutique installation for MSGM, and more recently arranged a blissful set for Valentino’s S/S 2021 fashion show. Now based in Milan, Kawamoto is currently working to launch his own sportswear and clothing brand, called Tom Owaak, set to debut in September 2021. 

Boasting a sushi bar, spaces for private dining, family celebrations and formal business dinners, Sachi is a destination where Nordic and Japanese culture converge. Inspired by regional Japanese cuisine, the food is a unique interplay of Nordic flavours, featuring contemporary dishes inspired by seasonal and local delicacies from Hokkaido, Osaka and Fukuoka. 

Pantechnicon already houses two Nordic and Japanese shops, the UK’s first Café Kitsune, an impressive rooftop garden, a sleek winter terrace and now an exciting basement restaurant that boasts a colourful and exciting installation by master plant artist Satoshi Kawamoto. §

Detail of botanical installation by Satoshi Kawamoto at Sachi
Detail of the installation