Known as the founder of the Japanese avant-garde movement, Issey Miyake is recognized as one of the greatest designers of the 20th century. Miyake created an interactive relationship between our bodies and the clothes we wear, a relationship that has yet to be recreated or replaced. Though having retired in 1999, Miyake’s influence holds firm today.
Born in war-torn Japan, Issey Miyake was just seven years old when he survived the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in 1945. Miyake took this traumatic life event and turned it into inspiration. He found freedom and hope in creation from destruction.
Between 1970 - 1999, Issey Miyake led the contemporary and experimental movement in Japan and France. He openly challenged the Western conventions of fashion shifting the weight from pompous and extravagant pieces to garments that were free-flowing and accentuated the natural human form. Having been born in Japan, Miyake was free of Western tradition. This gave him the space and mental capacity to create his universe.
Inspired by the work of Madeleine Vionnet, Miyake integrated arithmetic and the idea of creating garments from a single piece of cloth into his work. He was also one of the first to experiment with the integration of technology in fashion such as creating computer programs to precisely knit and weave his pieces . Shape and form molded Miyake’s design process. He strived to blend art and function into singular garments. Issey Miyake did not care to conform to fashion norms. It was never his intention. Having revolutionized the way we see fashion, Miyake continues to spend his time looking for new ways to shift the paradigm.