Yusuke Takahashi took on the fundamental contest of human
existence—man versus nature—with his new collection for Issey Miyake Men. On the one hand, he wanted to change the line's "relaxed style to something more contemporary," so he took a look at the cut and cloth of British tradition. On the other, Takahashi traveled to Iceland, where the elemental dynamism of nature—fire and ice, volcanoes and glaciers—impressed him. The clothing he subsequently designed blended order and chaos to great effect.
Predictably, it was order with which the presentation began: more tailoring than we're used to seeing in a Miyake show. "An elegant and masculine style," said Takahashi. But the clothes were patterned with cosmic traceries and the lines of geological strata. As the show unraveled, order devolved into huge, rough-cut ponchos, again striated with layers of mineral color. Some pieces shone with the glow of the Northern Lights, others flared with magma. A Miyake innovation called prism tape trailed down jackets like a luminous pinstripe or was woven into shiny Arctic explorer looks. Toward the end of the lineup, color really began to sing, in kaleidoscopic layers of Miyake's signature pleating. The freewheeling vibrancy made one wonder whether Takahashi had moved from one fine British tradition to another. "No, no, it's not rave, he insisted. "It's a rainbow."