MAISON MIHARA YASUHIRO SS22 + INTERVIEW
Maison Mihara Yasuhiro presents its new “usual” SS22 collection, where air travel becomes the central theme of its designs. The beauty of distortion as a key style in this new collection that gives us a great feeling of freedom and fun. Mihara Yasuhiro tells us exclusively all about "Usual" and his creative process.
NZ: After a few difficult years worldwide, the light is finally seen at the end of the tunnel. Freedom and fun are the sensations that we have been able to observe in the showcase of the SS22 collection. How have you lived this last year? Do you think it is reflected in the collection?
MY: It has been a strange year of course, but I very much value maintaining my daily routine. I don't want an exciting life so personally I’ve not been affect. Really, I've been living the same way for the last year. Keeping some sort of consistency in life has meant that my creative process hasn’t been affected. That being said – air travel is a central theme in my collection as I’ve been thinking a lot about how I miss that (even though I used to hate flying). It feels especially poignant at the moment because I would usually be flying to Paris for my show.
NZ: The "usual" collection is undoubtedly a fusion of urban styles. How would you define the style of this new presentation?
MY: Vintage pieces and techniques were starting point. I think of it as post-heritage.
NZ: What inspired you when creating the collection?
MY: It's not just about the message in the clothes for me, but highlighting my work as a conceptual artist, this has always interested me since I was an art student. I always hide metaphors in my creations. It's like a poem, sometimes like a passage in a novel.
NZ: The “Usual” garments combine different patterns but in common at the same time, from oversize, fluid garments to deconstructive looks, what is the message behind each garment?
MY: Recently, I have become interested in patterns that create unique and different silhouettes. The idea of patterns in the age of Vionnet is particularly interesting, for example, patterns from the early 20 century right up to present day.
At that time, I think patterns were created express the human body beautifully, I'm interested in expressing the "beauty of distortion". Things that look oversized but also evolved.
I am fascinated by the concept of "oversizing", but most importantly its unique distortion.
Each deconstruction/combination of these patterns has a visualisation of the existence of "concept" and "time." You feel that way because you resonate with the concept and time.
NZ: We could see the importance that you give to music in your collections, how they interfere with the creative process?
MY: I think music is a kind of architecture. Music is like a key pillar of the creative space from which to build a world around.
NZ: Besides music, dance has great relevance in the showcase of the SS22 collection. How did the filming process go?
MY: I feel that it was not really dancing but a beautiful natural movement. The photo was taken at the check-in counter of “Haneda International Airport”, which is currently closed due to Covid-19.
It was quite hard to capture, especially the shot of the models performing while the band called "LITE" was performing.
I created the script and directed the models throughout. As shooting time was very limited, we had to make sure that the filming was perfect.
It really made my heartbreak. Because I thought I would fail.
However, I was impressed and encouraged by the efforts of the filming crew, the models, the band and my incredible staff.
Each model's role has a little bit of meaning. It would be nice if people who watch this video think of it as a puzzle.
NZ: The influence of current Japanese fashion is very evident in this collection; how do you think it will be received in Europe? Do you consider that Japanese fashion is in a boom time?
MY: I've never thought about it like that. Rather than being accepted or not in Europe, I think of it as bringing my work to the people who appreciate and understand my creative process.
The fashion market is so vast and wide, so I am trying to connect with people who understand my beautifully odd creations.
NZ: As a designer, what do you think are the values that make an idea become a fashion collection. During that process, which one would you say you enjoy the most?
MY: It is the moment when your own intricate philosophy and concept come together perfectly. I value that the most when everything fits like a puzzle.
NZ: Fortunately, little by little, sustainability has more impact and presence in the fashion industry. How does Maison Mihara Yasuhiro act in the face of this?
MY: "Sustainable" has become the favourite word of the fashion industry.
It's a trending word, however, I think it's the nature of fashion for "things that are popular, will soon go out of fashion" This is a very dangerous situation.
Sustainability should not be a trending word or a sales pitch. It's a duty. In a sense, it is a reform of the fashion system.
It's not just about what brands think. Everything is related to materials, factories, and products.
Our approach to sustainability has already begun, we have always used responsibly sourced materials, without calling it out as a “thing”.
At any rate, I think people who buy our products just need to decide whether they like our clothing or not. It's not about educating consumers about sustainability.
What we can do to achieve this is to change the overarching system so that environmental responsibility is social maintained.