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TTC Talks to Nakanari aka Tony Shiau


While Nakanari was in Jakarta for Popcon Asia and UIC Design college help inspired young generation in design. Joshua from Plastic Culture was ever so kind to introduce Natasha our Popcon Asia correspondent to Nakanari and also invite her to a small meet up after his busy schedule. I took this opportunity  to ask Natasha if she could fire some of our questions that we made over to Nakanari, of course she agreed and Nakanari was kind to accept.

Natasha :
I’m lucky enough to finally have a short chat with @Nakanari aka Tony Shiau before he’s going back to Orlando, USA. He was really a kind, funny and passionate in person. Thanks to Joshua from Plastic Culture for arranging this meeting, and here’s the interview !
How did you discover the world of designer/art toys?
I’m a self-taught designer. But I always grown-up with superhero and toys. My first toys that I really like from when I was a kid was He – Man
HE Man
Having a successful brand Maihiro and character like spiki, what tips would you give to artist starting and want to do the same?
I believe Number 1 is you have to have a passion. Anything start with passion would be leading to success. So an artist definitely have to be inspired and patience.
Maihiro Black Lucky cat Spiki Popcon 2014
Mai Hiro logo
When Kidrobot made your first Dunny did it have an effect on your fanbase?

I‘m actually used to work for toy company and we supply for Kidrobot before they even make toys. But then I got invited to their major events and making a custom 20inch Dunny for their grand opening in New York and Miami Kidrobot stores. My 2012 Dunny, they actually reject my design at first, but couple of months later they told me to make it. So I worked a little bit more detailed and we finally produced them and the top 3 pick for that series.


Nakanari Dunny 2012

What was you’re experience like at this years Popcon Asia?

I like the Popcon more because it’s a smaller event, so the fans got a chance to contact personally with the artist. So it’s giving me the chance to engage better with the people who really into it.

Mega Munny live custom with Nakanari. Plastic culture popcon plastic culture


Outside of sculpting/toy work do you have any other interesting hobbies?

Here’s the thing, maybe people envy-ing my life, I love my life too, but I considered myself as a boring person. My daily life would be working at the University, and working with the Maihiro team. So I’m also working in the weekends, and have no time for other hobbies. But I really like um…. toy shopping? Oh…. and sneakers! 


Did you see any artists at Popcon that caught your eye?

Actually I found many talented Indonesian artist, especially the one that independent and not manufactured. But I actually like @Alympu design because I always like anything with samurai.


When you sit to create, can you describe your ideal setting?

I enjoy the silent moment in the midnight, so I’m happy to work at that time, and nobody bother me. I also like watching TEDx ( TEDx Talks ), hearing inspirational people speaking and Vice Magazine.

While in Jakarta whats the best place you have eaten and dish?

There’s many good food in Jakarta even though I found it a little bit spicy and I like more ‘sweet’ food. But Joshua, has taken me to this seafood restaurant near the beach and the food was amazing.

So I see you met my dear friend Paulus Hyu did you meet his dog Nimbus?

Yes, I also went to his house, which really cool. He’s design also has his personality, Great guy.

Nakanari Nimbus paulushyu


Paulus Hyu Susanto Sleepwalker OG
Paulus Sleepwalker OG Sneak peek

Paulus Hyu Susanto Sleepwalker Popcon

Any plans to come to ToyconUK? 
The thing is we’re not a toy company, we only design toys. So I’m hardly to come to the conventions if I don’t have new toys. But I’m supporting.
What do you think of the current designer toy scene?
The trend is kind of going down, because the economics issues and people don’t really buy toys nowadays. The designer toys starting to do mass-market toys like Ninja Turtle or The Simpsons for example. It’s kind of loose it’s cutting edge, when it’s supposed to be more individual and unique. 
Simpsons-SilverBuddha-Toy-6inch-ThreeQuarters_compact TMNT_Bebop_VinylToy_7inch_ThreeQuarters_compact
In your personal collection what specific pieces do you collect and do you have a holy grail piece that you are currently trying to track down?
I love Coarse toys Pain and Original paintings by Damon Soule
the rise of pain in dreams Coarse Toys
The rise of pain in dreams

*MOON BABIES* MURAL IN DENVER from SparklesPositron on Vimeo.

Is there anything you’re working on that you can tell us about?
Plastic Culture actually ask me to do couple of design, but we’re still working on it. Next big project is we will working with a big Japanese brand and Gibson.

Nakanari x Gibson guitar  Linda Le Nakanari x Gibson guitar

If you could work with one artist to do a collaboration who would it be?
I would say Michael Lau, because he’s inspired me before I became an artist. He changed my mind that toys is just not a toys, but an art.

Michael Lau  Gardener-BB-gumgumgum-banner

I would personally like to thank Joshua from Plastic Culture for inviting Natasha to the meet up and Nakanari / Mai Hiro Team for giving The Toy Chronicle you’re time

 You can catch Nakanari via Twitter , Facebook  and Instagram

Natasha Lucas yummy food /styling blog and her Instagram

If you are around Indonesia  the biggest must is check out and hit them up Via Facebook , Twitter and Instagram

Nakanari and Natasha Victoria Lucas
Nakanari and Natasha Victoria Lucas

Nakanari  Mai Hiro Plastic culture

Nakanari  Mai Hiro The Toy Chronicle

Video of  Nakanari aka Tony Shiau working his magic.

Nakanari x Bluemotion x PXL+ Wall Mural from Bluemotion Studios on Vimeo.

(images lifted from Nakanari and other resources and belong to original owners)

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TTC Legend

Written by Andy

A Yellow guy with bad English who's a chef by trade but addicted to toys and art. Instagram nutter rambling food addict who likes to take photos of everything I eat (most Asians do right?) Please don't class me as a journalist or blogger, more on the lines of talent scout and always backs the little guy.

Instagram ( BigToyPoo)
I am that one dickhead too.


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