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The Geology of Issey Miyake

The geological-looking surfaces and geometric yet easy shapes made for an enjoyable show, but under the layers of Issey Miyake's history, the brand appears to be on autopilot.
Issey Miyake Spring/Summer 2018 | Source: Indigital
By
  • Angelo Flaccavento

PARIS, France — There was, as ever, something both primeval and futuristic about today's Issey Miyake show. You know, that classic Miyake trope: geometric, asymmetric, ultimately easy shapes that look like something that comes from the depth of history, or a progressive utopia, done in experimental, highly innovative fabrications. This time Miyake's trademark pleats came in circular shapes, but most of all there were Baked Stretch and new Cube techniques, looking very optical and very comfy.

Yoshiyuki Miyamae and his design team took a trip to Iceland before designing the collection. The dry, sublime landscapes of the world's youngest land were the reason for the geological-looking surfaces, for the shifting layers and, yes, also some unnecessary photo prints. It made for an enjoyable show that was mostly about colour and lightness — but also made you wonder about the Issey Miyake identity.

In a time when Issey's own progressive and humanist design ethos, not to mention his abstract yet simple shapes, are more relevant than ever, it would be interesting to see the Issey Miyake brand take a more challenging position, going for a stronger image and doing something truly rooted in this particular moment to cater a new audience. Instead, it's almost like they are on autopilot. Ultimately, this show was a little average. Myake should never be average.

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