written by:
August 3, 2011

Because the September 2011 issue is dedicated to the influence of Japanese design (architecture, craft, and industrial design primarily), we'd be utterly remiss if we didn't give a nod to the tremendous influence of Japanese fashion. Last year the Barbican Art Gallery launched a show called Future Beauty: 30 Years of Japanese Fashion, and though the show closed in February, the excellent catalog by Akiko Fukai, Barbara Vinken, Susanna Frankel, and Hirofumi Kurino, still offers a stunning glimpse at how designers like Rei Kawokubo, Junya Watanabe, Issey Miyake, and others have changed the face of high fashion. Have a look at the slideshow that follows and marvel at some of the most stunning design to come out of Japan.

The cover image for Future Beauty is actually a work of art by Cindy Sherman from 1994. The shapeshifter wears a costume designed by Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons.
The cover image for Future Beauty is actually a work of art by Cindy Sherman from 1994. The shapeshifter wears a costume designed by Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons.
1 / 13
This image is of a red polyester cap by Hiroaki Ohya is from the Spring/Summer 2000 Wizard of Jeans collection. The cape expands like a beehive and can also be folded flat.
This image is of a red polyester cap by Hiroaki Ohya is from the Spring/Summer 2000 Wizard of Jeans collection. The cape expands like a beehive and can also be folded flat.
2 / 13
Kawakubo's designs rarely hug the body, instead working with a play of light and shadows, volume and drape. This dress is from her Autumn/Winter 1992-1993 collection for Comme des Garcons is made of purplish brown polyester Georgette (two sheets as sleeve
Kawakubo's designs rarely hug the body, instead working with a play of light and shadows, volume and drape. This dress is from her Autumn/Winter 1992-1993 collection for Comme des Garcons is made of purplish brown polyester Georgette (two sheets as sleeves) and black nylon knit at the massive collar.
3 / 13
Here's the dress laid out. The photo is by Naoya Hatakeyama and is in the collection of the Kyoto Costume Institute.
Here's the dress laid out. The photo is by Naoya Hatakeyama and is in the collection of the Kyoto Costume Institute.
4 / 13
This coat from Rei Kawakubo's 1983-1984 Autumn/Winter collection for Comme des Garcons is made of wool felt. Though it has a strong, sculptural form when worn, it's actually made of two panels, the smaller of which slides through a slit in the larger piec
This coat from Rei Kawakubo's 1983-1984 Autumn/Winter collection for Comme des Garcons is made of wool felt. Though it has a strong, sculptural form when worn, it's actually made of two panels, the smaller of which slides through a slit in the larger piece and hangs from the side of the chest. There are no buttons or fasteners.
5 / 13
Here's that same coat laid flat. It's incredible what a powerfully constructed form emerges once it's put on.
Here's that same coat laid flat. It's incredible what a powerfully constructed form emerges once it's put on.
6 / 13
Here's another design by Kawakubo for Comme des Garcons that is defined by a series of slots that once filled create a splendidly textured garment. The dramatic draping is made with twenty sheets of beige binding. It's from the Spring/Summer 1998 collecti
Here's another design by Kawakubo for Comme des Garcons that is defined by a series of slots that once filled create a splendidly textured garment. The dramatic draping is made with twenty sheets of beige binding. It's from the Spring/Summer 1998 collection.
7 / 13
Here's the dress laid flat. It rather resembles a sleeping bag and only when worn does the ruffle on the bodice take shape.
Here's the dress laid flat. It rather resembles a sleeping bag and only when worn does the ruffle on the bodice take shape.
8 / 13
This dress is from Junya Watanabe's Autumn/Winter 2000-2001 collection for Comme des Garcons. The "techno couture" collection was marked by organdie ruffs and polyester construction.
This dress is from Junya Watanabe's Autumn/Winter 2000-2001 collection for Comme des Garcons. The "techno couture" collection was marked by organdie ruffs and polyester construction.
9 / 13
This black wool jersey dress by Junya Watanabe for the Autumn/Winter 2008-2009 Junya Watanabe/Comme des Garcons collection offers a sleeker, sexier silhouette than in previous Comme collections.
This black wool jersey dress by Junya Watanabe for the Autumn/Winter 2008-2009 Junya Watanabe/Comme des Garcons collection offers a sleeker, sexier silhouette than in previous Comme collections.
10 / 13
Here's a synthetic leather skirt and top by Kawakubo for Comme des Garcons from the Spring/Summer 2009 line. Pret-a-porter it's not. At least not the headpiece.
Here's a synthetic leather skirt and top by Kawakubo for Comme des Garcons from the Spring/Summer 2009 line. Pret-a-porter it's not. At least not the headpiece.
Courtesy of 
11 / 13
Junya Watanbe's Feather and Air collection for Junya Watanabe/Comme des Garcons in Autumn/Winter 2009-2010 plays with the lightness and volume of down coats. Clearly this wasn't designed for a weekend in Yosemite. The golden metal chain does give it a bit
Junya Watanbe's Feather and Air collection for Junya Watanabe/Comme des Garcons in Autumn/Winter 2009-2010 plays with the lightness and volume of down coats. Clearly this wasn't designed for a weekend in Yosemite. The golden metal chain does give it a bit of Gothic grandeur.
12 / 13
Transparency (common in fashion, but rarely so elegant) reigns here in this drewss by Yohji Yamamoto from his Spring/Summer collection of 1983. The photo is Hiroshi Sugimoto.<br /><br /><p><em><strong>Don't miss a word of Dwell! Download our </strong></em
Transparency (common in fashion, but rarely so elegant) reigns here in this drewss by Yohji Yamamoto from his Spring/Summer collection of 1983. The photo is Hiroshi Sugimoto.

Don't miss a word of Dwell! Download our FREE app from iTunes, friend us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter!

13 / 13
The cover image for Future Beauty is actually a work of art by Cindy Sherman from 1994. The shapeshifter wears a costume designed by Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons.
The cover image for Future Beauty is actually a work of art by Cindy Sherman from 1994. The shapeshifter wears a costume designed by Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons.

Join the Discussion

Loading comments...

Latest Articles

45 dva 2270 persp1 cmyk 0
The prospect of retirement doesn’t just signal the end of a career; it offers the chance to recalibrate and re-prioritize in life.
July 25, 2016
18
You don’t have to choose between sustainable energy and curb appeal.
July 19, 2016
jakemagnus queensland 1
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
July 06, 2016
content delzresidence 013 1
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
June 29, 2016
abc malacari marwick stair 01 0
A simple set of stairs is a remodel’s backbone.
June 28, 2016
Design Award of Excellence winner Mellon Square.
Docomomo US announces the winners of this year's Modernism in America Awards. Each project showcases exemplary modern restoration techniques, practices, and ideas.
June 27, 2016
monogram dwell sf 039 1
After last year’s collaboration, we were excited to team up with Monogram again for the 2016 Monogram Modern Home Tour.
June 27, 2016
switch over chicago smart renovation penthouse deck smar green ball lamps quinze milan lounge furniture garapa hardwood
A strategic rewire enhances a spec house’s gut renovation.
June 26, 2016
young guns 2016 emerging talent coralie gourguechon treviso italy cphotos by coralie gourguechon co produced by isdat planche anatomique de haut parleur1
Coralie Gourguechon's paper objects will make you see technology in a whole new way.
June 26, 2016
green machine smart home aspen colorado facade yard bocci deck patio savant
Smart technology helps a house in Aspen, Colorado, stay on its sustainable course.
June 25, 2016
Compact Aglol 11 television plastic brionvega.
The aesthetic appeal of personal electronics has long fueled consumer interest. A new industrial design book celebrates devices that broke the mold.
June 25, 2016
modern backyard deck ipe wood
An angled deck transforms a backyard in Menlo Park, California, into a welcoming gathering spot.
June 24, 2016
dscf5485 1
Today, we kicked off this year’s annual Dwell on Design at the LA Convention Center, which will continue through Sunday, June 26th. Though we’ve been hosting this extensive event for years, this time around is particularly special.
June 24, 2016
under the radar renovation napa
Two designers restore a low-slung midcentury gem in Napa, California, by an unsung Bay Area modernist.
June 24, 2016
Exterior of Huneeus/Sugar Bowl Home.
San Francisco–based designer Maca Huneeus created her family’s weekend retreat near Lake Tahoe with a relaxed, sophisticated sensibility.
June 24, 2016
light and shadow bathroom walnut storage units corian counter vola faucet
A Toronto couple remodel their home with a special emphasis on a spacious kitchen and a material-rich bathroom.
June 24, 2016
Affordable home in Kansas City living room
In Kansas City, an architecture studio designs an adaptable house for a musician on a budget.
June 23, 2016
modern lycabettus penthouse apartment oak vertical slats office
By straightening angles, installing windows, and adding vertical accents, architect Aaron Ritenour brought light and order to an irregularly shaped apartment in the heart of Athens, Greece.
June 23, 2016
kitchen confidential tiles custom cabinetry oak veneer timber house
A modest kitchen addition to a couple’s cottage outside of Brisbane proves that one 376-square-foot room can revive an entire home.
June 23, 2016
feldman architecture 0
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
June 22, 2016
Blackened timber Dutch home
A modern dwelling replaces a fallen farmhouse.
June 22, 2016
hillcrest house interior kitchen 3
Seeking an escape from bustling city life, a Manhattan couple embarks on a renovation in the verdant Hudson Valley.
June 22, 2016
angular
Atelier Moderno renovated an old industrial building to create a luminous, modern home.
June 21, 2016
San Francisco floating home exterior
Anchored in a small San Francisco canal, this floating home takes its cues from a classic city habitat.
June 21, 2016
modern renovation addition solar powered scotland facade steel balcony
From the bones of a neglected farmstead in rural Scotland emerges a low-impact, solar-powered home that’s all about working with what was already there.
June 21, 2016
up in the air small space new zealand facade corrugated metal cladding
An architect with a taste for unconventional living spaces creates a small house at lofty heights with a starring view.
June 21, 2016
young guns 2016 emerging talent marjan van aubel london cwai ming ng current window
Marjan Van Aubel makes technology a little more natural.
June 21, 2016
urban pastoral brooklyn family home facade steel cypress double
Building on the site of a former one-car garage, an architect creates his family’s home in an evolving neighborhood of Brooklyn.
June 20, 2016
Modern Brooklyn backyard studio with plexiglass skylight, green roof, and cedar cladding facade
In a Brooklyn backyard, an off-duty architect builds a structure that tests his attention to the little things.
June 20, 2016
the outer limits paris prefab home living area vertigo lamp constance guisset gijs bakker strip tablemetal panels
In the suburbs of Paris, an architect with an eco-friendly practice doesn’t let tradition stand in the way of innovation.
June 20, 2016