We’re big fans of Anrealage, the Japanese label working on merging traditional handicraft with the latest innovations, be they technologic or sciences-based. We attended to the brand’s latest show today, which as usual was made to play with our received wisdom on garments.
Founded by Kunihiko Moriniga in 2003 after graduating from Waseda University and the Vantan Design Institute, Anrealage‘s name mixes reality (Real), with the incredible (Unreal) and the age (Age). Known for his cerebral designs, Moriniga explores a particular theme for each of his collection.
“I think that there is both a science technology and a human technology in technology. I am interested in making clothes by crossing over these two different technologies. I think that in any age, it is important to maintain a close relationship with the technology of that specific age. Combining the technology made by man’s hands and the high technology made by the latest machines may be our future task.” the designer told Italian Vogue.
This season, Moriniga explored materials and lighting. Through his black and clear collection, the designer and his team produced garments in primitive manners by hand, spending lots of time, while using futuristic and chemical materials. Playing with the absorption of light, some garments show coexistence of invisible light (black) and invisible color (clear), appearing in completely black, and as the model came down the catwalk, it then lost its color gradually, and appeared again at the end.
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The material, which goes back and forth between black and clear, is the result of a collaboration with Mitsui Chemicals, one of Japan’s biggest chemical companies, which specializes in polymer materials. Called Clear Black Photochromic, this material becomes totally black under the sunlight and starts losing color under fluorescent lights, turning back to transparent in the due course.
On top of this material development, Moriniga’s team made thousands of embellishment parts, buttons, balls and studs, out of STABiO™ photochromic material, a urethane material created in collaboration with Mitsui Chemicals, and put them on the garments of the collection, covering almost all the surface – each outfit has more than 5,000 parts, and was made by hand! A tremendous amount of handicraft that made the models look like divine creatures glowing under the runway lights.