Issey Miyake exhibition opens in Tokyo

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A retrospective exhibition of the work of Issey Miyake opened on Wednesday at the National Art Center of Tokyo. The exhibit focuses on the 45 years year long career of the designer and focuses on archival pieces from his past collections, as well as interactive and moving displays demonstrating how some of the clothes are made.

Miyake’s notion that clothing is not merely “fashion”, but a form of design that is closely connected to our lives on a much more universal level is clearly apparent in the way the exhibit is set up. Miyake has always explored the relationship between a piece of cloth and the body, and the space that is created as a result is unrestricted by any existing framework.

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Miyake’s notion that clothing is not merely “fashion”, but a form of design that is closely connected to our lives on a much more universal level is clearly apparent in the way the exhibit is set up. Miyake has always explored the relationship between a piece of cloth and the body, and the space that is created as a result is unrestricted by any existing framework.

The exhibition is divided into three sections.

The first exhibition room showcases a row of mannequins wearing Miyake’s early pieces, mostly from the 70s. The mannequins are made are made from 365 panels of laser-cut paper, assembled together to mimic the human form.

The second room investigates Miyake’s exploration of the relationship between clothing and the body that brings it to life. Here the same mannequins are made from clear resin, and the works presented were pulled from his 80s collections.

Finally, the third room breathe life into Miyake’s aesthetics through innovation in clothing construction. Dozens of mannequins are dressed in ground-breaking looks from decades of collections, while a full-sized, functional machine demonstrates how Miyake’s famous pleats are created.

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Miyake’s famous pleats

Other displays show flat, folded garments that appear to magically take shape when placed on the body. There you can also find a video presentation and interactive exhibits for children.

The exhibit will run until June 13th, 2016 at the National Art Center of Tokyo (7 Chome-22-2 Roppongi, Minato, Tokyo 106-8558, Japan).

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