PARIS, LA 6: TOKYO FASHION
Issue 6: Tokyo Fashion
I don’t consider myself as an optimistic person. I always think of what I should do to make things. I think of what I should do now. I wish to continue to make research and develop the future technology and to make things with the team of young designers who are to create the future designs.
Those are the words Monsieur Issey Miyake uses to end our conversation, featured on the poster. When I interviewed him, and during the time I was working on this special Tokyo Fashion issue, Japan had not yet faced the tragedy it suffers now. Today it’s different. The worst has happened, and all of sudden everything resonates with a different tone. Sadness mixed with real concerns.
This is the first time PARISLA has done a special fashion issue. And in the geographical context of the magazine, the city of Tokyo seems a stimulating choice. Indeed, as many people of my generation, I learned from the Japanese designers of the 1970s and 80s. I think of Issey Miyake and Rei Kawakubo of Comme des Garçons first of all, both of which revolutionized our vision of clothes and consequently the way clothes are worn. Miyake and Kawakubo, each in their own unique way, imported a radical conceptual dimension into the world of fashion. It is an honor to feature both of them with two amazing stories: a conversation with Issey Miyake on the future of making things, and the special feature on Comme des Garçons set in the great heritage of Hollywood glamour.
The present issue should not be read as an inventory of Japanese fashion. Some of the great designers living and creating today in Tokyo are missing from the list. Still, we tried to understand, without presumptions, where Japanese fashion stands today. Looking at Chitose Abe of Sacai and Junichi Abe of Kolor, it seems that the younger generation walks out of line. As if the concept of esthetic resides in a playful opulence.
Japan is now confronting the aftermath of the tsunami: a nuclear threat triggered by natural disaster. It’s very scary and it poses the question of where the ethical frontier lies in relation to new technologies. In many ways, it is a catastrophe that affects us all, and our future will be shaped by how the crisis is resolved.
Monsieur Miyake is a wise man. For him, the future of making things mixes traditional crafts with new techniques, with the humble aim to regenerate the world. What is beautiful in this idea is that it applies not only to Fashion, but to many other fields of creation as well.
The misfortune encountered by the Japanese people, and the way they respond to it through an amazing calm and boldness, is a huge lesson of Zen. Again, it is time to learn from Japan. The following issue is dedicated to our friends and the people of Japan. All of our thoughts accompany you.
– 日本からのご挨拶 , collages by Rosie Roberts
– Spring and summer emotions in fashion by photographer Camille Vivier
– All the Colors Make Me Feel the Same About You, photos by Yasunari Kikuma, fashion editor Lotta Volkova Adam
– A photographic essay by the French designer Julien David