Issey Miyake is no stranger to technology. He has made a name for himself both in Japan and across the globe for his monochromatic shapes that fuse high-tech engineering processes with ancient forms of kimono structure and hand-loomed fabrics.
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that his latest store, which opened on November 26th in the Minami Aoyama district of Tokyo – solely dedicated to his new “132 5. ISSEY MIYAKE” line of clothing – is a total embodiment and amalgamation of everything he has attempted to achieve up until now.
Co-developed by Reality Lab, a team of computer scientists and engineers led by Manabu Kikuchi (textile engineer) and Sachiko Yamamoto (Pattern Engineer), the new line of clothing shares many of the same principles that a children’s pop-up book have. Beginning with two-dimensional shapes, a series of incisions and folds allow the flat pattern to expand into 3-dimensional garments. (see below – click to enlarge)
Photos © Hiroshi Iwasaki
They were inspired by the work of computer scientist Jun Mitani, namely his Spherical Origami series.
The store itself, which was designed by Tokujin Yoshioka, features transparent mannequin torsos suspended from the ceiling. Each mannequin is adorned with one of the garments and accompanied by a flattened version of the garment AND an interactive iPad, which visually communicates the process in which the flattened shape emerges as a 3-dimensional objects of fashion. Yoshioka describes his design as an attempt to escape from superficial interiors and engage in a process of designing a new way of selling items.
A related exhibition, “Reality Lab,” is currently on display at 21_21 Design Sight through 12/26.