Minolta “The Kappa”

Emily Ma

Form follows function, whether in architecture, design, or fashion. The Minolta Weathermatic, known as The Kappa in Japan, is a waterproof 35mm camera introduced in the early 1980’s. Compact, with a fixed focus lens, and bright yellow housing to better spot it in the water, became an iconic design over time. Loved by photographers, for its simple controls, rugged durability, and compact size, as well as designers, for its eye-catching color, playful ingenuity, and utilitarian features, the Weathermatic embodies the concept of 離/Ri in Shuhari. The camera design departs from every traditional notion of what a camera should look like, it starts from scratch with deep knowledge of what photographers need and want, especially in extreme settings like snorkeling or scuba diving, to create a new departure that sets the standard for the category.