Shake 320: You spin me right round baby

February 19, 2011

Shirley, Tokyo's 100 Yen Shop (Japan), Feb 2011

When you grow up in each others’ pockets and your fathers are best buddies, you might as well call each other family. So when I talk about Shirley, I always affectionately call her my cousin. Shirley has spent the last 3 years devoting herself to a scholarship masters degree at the Tokyo University of the Arts while living on carrot sticks, sultanas and occasionally some sake when she’s got the money.

She’s returned briefly with a suitcase full of artwork and more importantly, to be fattened up by her grandmother! On her last visit home, she asked friends to draw their dream spinning top on a postcard which would form the basis of a year-long project – the results now being exhibited at the Gaffa Gallery. The pieces are colourful, intricate and what I love is that each contributor (via their postcard) adds as much humour as the artist does. It’s a beautiful harmony of individual artwork and Shirley’s 3D interpretation. My favourite was the albino alpaca, which just needed a little bit of water to transform it into a spinning snowdome top. It’s definitely a lot of fun and she’s had an amazing response to it, so check it out. There’s even a little table filled with spinning tops so you can spin yourself out!

Unfortunately, I caught the tail end of the exhibition, so there are only a couple of days left. They stop spinning on Tuesday.

Shirley's The Spinning Top

'Albert the albino alpaca is dancing upon the spinning earth'

The Newfie's beauty inspired by a German postage stamp

A beautiful red skirted spin

A hovering UFO

Some more magical pieces

Spin yourself out!

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4 Responses to “Shake 320: You spin me right round baby”


  1. Thanks cousin! Happy to see that you enjoyed the exhibition. You are going to have to fight for the albino alpaca as the contributing friend probably won’t let it go without a fight! That snowdome spinning top though is definitely one for the future!

    Thanks to my family and friends (and especially my granny), I am munching on all sorts of good food here in Sydney and not particularly missing those carrot sticks!

    PS: That 100yen snowdome is looking more like 10,000yen!

  2. snowdomes Says:

    I wish I’d brought my good camera to the exhibition! My iphone pics don’t do your tops justice.


  3. […] Gallery Gaffa Gallery blog Design Federation A dome a day pretty pretty yum […]


  4. […] mu õe sõbranna shirley tegi hiljuti näituse  (siin räägib sellest natuke pikemalt, sealt on ka see foto pärit), mis oli vurre täis – ta […]


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