Japan House London launches exhibition of critically acclaimed textile designer Sudō Reiko
- MAKING NUNO Japanese Textile Innovation from Sudō Reiko is a brand-new exhibition adaptation presenting work by internationally acclaimed Japanese textile designer Sudō Reiko with projection installations designed by the exhibition’s artistic director, Saitō Seiichi of Rhizomatiks.
- Produced in collaboration with CHAT (Centre for Heritage Arts and Textile) in Hong Kong, the exhibition expands on the successful show in 2019 curated by Takahashi Mizuki, Executive Director and Chief Curator of CHAT.
- The free exhibition reveals how Sudō Reiko’s work pushes the boundaries of textile production with unconventional and sustainable materials and engineering techniques, working with manufacturers from across Japan.
- Featuring five large-scale installations combining NUNO textiles and art projections by leading technological designers Rhizomatiks from Tokyo, shown for the first time in the UK, with supporting drawings and sketches, raw materials, design prototypes, and video.
- Launches Saturday 6 February 2021
LONDON 11 November 2020: Japan House London presents an exhibition showcasing the innovative work of textile designer Sudō Reiko. Running 6 February ‒ 16 May 2021, this new exhibition, with art direction by Saitō Seiichi of Rhizomatiks, shines a spotlight on the Japanese designer pushing the boundaries of textile production and championing new methods of sustainable manufacture.
Design Director of leading textile design firm NUNO for over 30 years, Sudō trained as a textile and industrial designer, and she designs fabrics that incorporate traditions of Japanese crafts with new engineering techniques and unusual combinations of materials. She works with materials as diverse as silk, hand-made washi (Japanese paper) nylon tape and thermoplastic, and technologies derived from Japanese hand craft traditions such as caustic burning, weaving and dying. Her inspiring designs are currently housed in collections around the world, including in MoMA in New York and in the V&A in London.
The exhibition at Japan House London includes five large-scale installations of Sudō’s work with the manufacturing processes brought to life by Saitō Seiichi’s artistic direction. Using a variety of thought-provoking processes from washi dyeing to chemical lace embroidery inspired by rolls of paper, each installation is accompanied by drawings and sketches, alongside raw materials and design prototypes.
Visitors to the exhibition encounter a series of installations that demonstrates the ways in which Sudō uses innovation and creativity to make steps towards building a more sustainable global textile production industry, with particular focus on the sustainability of materials, regional manufacturing industries and craftsmanship.
Sustainability of Material
See how Sudō harnesses unconventional materials such as washi alongside textile techniques such as heating and bonding to create entirely original works.
Not to be missed, Kibiso Crisscross, a collaborative project with the Tsuruoka Textile Makers Cooperative, takes discarded kibiso, the protective outer layer of silk cocoons and uses a specially developed machine to create yarns from the tough remnants, creating the first step towards realising the ‘no-waste, use everything potential’ not previously seen in the silk industry.
Sustainability of Regional Manufacturing
Explore the origins of Sudō’s work, following her decades of work with family-run factories across Japan which specialise in different production techniques, collaborating with each to develop new, alternative production methods to push the possibilities of industrial machinery making and help revitalise these regional manufacturing hubs.
Sustainability of Traditions and Craftsmanship
Discover Sudō’s designs that revive old textile machines and Japanese craftsmanship on the verge of disappearing. Learn how she incorporates intricate craftsmanship into industrial textile production, collaborating with different experts and artisans along the way to help preserve craft heritage through upcycling and reinvention.
Sudō Reiko, Textile Designer and Design Director of NUNO: “Japanese textiles are born of a long history, embracing both refined traditions of artistry and unparalleled high-tech materials. Since 1984, Nuno has collaborated with skilled local artisans all over Japan using a wide variety of different fibres and techniques to craft some 3000 different textiles. Among these are the richly textured maku partitions to be displayed in the centre of Japan House London’s ground floor. Much more than a mere ‘curtain’, these textiles afford entry into a visionary realm with a uniquely Japanese essence. Please step inside and be transported into our weaving wonderland.”
Simon Wright, Director of Programming, Japan House London: “We are delighted to be able to bring this brand new exhibition adaptation of innovative Japanese textile designer Sudō Reiko’s remarkable work to the UK for the first time. Originally shown in Hong Kong and curated by Takahashi Mizuki, Executive Director and Chief Curator of CHAT (Centre for Heritage Art and Textile), this exhibition brings together the immense creative talents of Sudō Reiko and artistic director Saitō Seiichi. At Japan House London, we are adding further depth to the exhibition by examining the themes of sustainability and regionality found within the wide variety of NUNO textile manufacture.”
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Notes to Editors:
For the most up-to-date details on opening and safety measures relating to COVID-19, please see : www.japanhouselondon.uk/covid
To download images of the textile installations please visit our Media Centre.
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About Sudō Reiko
Sudō was born in Ishioka City, Ibaraki Prefecture. After serving as a textile laboratory assistant in the Department of Industrial, Interior, and Craft Design at Musashino Art University, Sudō helped found Nuno Corporation. As Nuno’s Design Director, she combines Japanese traditions of dyeing and weaving with cutting-edge technology to create a wide range of innovative textiles. Sudō received an honorary MA degree from the University for the Creative Arts (UK), and has been an Emeritus Professor at Tokyo Zokei University since 2019.
Since 2008, Sudō has worked in fabric planning and development for Mujirushi Ryohin (MUJI) and the Tsuruoka Textile Industry Cooperative, and in design advising for AZU. She joined MUJI’s Advisory Board in 2016. Recipient of the Mainichi Design Award, the Rosco Design Prize, the JID Award, and many other honours, Sudō has received high acclaim within Museum of Modern Art (USA), The Metropolitan Museum of Art (USA), Boston Museum of Art (USA), the Victoria & Albert Museum (UK) and Crafts Gallery, The National Museum of Modern Art Tokyo (JPN) among many others. Representative projects include textile designs for Mandarin Oriental Tokyo, the Tokyo American Club and Oita Prefectural Art Museum. Sudō is frequently invited to give lectures and hold exhibitions around the world, including the major Koi nobori Now! textile installation at the National Art Center Tokyo in 2018 and Sudō Reiko : Making NUNO Textiles at the Centre for Heritage Arts & Textile Hong Kong in 2019.
About Japan House London
Japan House London is a cultural destination offering visitors the opportunity to experience the best and latest from Japan. Located on London’s Kensington High Street, the experience is an authentic encounter with Japan, engaging and surprising even the most knowledgeable guests. Presenting the very best of Japanese art, design, gastronomy, innovation, and technology, it deepens the visitor’s appreciation of all that Japan has to offer. Part of a global initiative led by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, there are two other Japan Houses, one in Los Angeles and the other in São Paulo.
Japan House London has received Visit Britain’s ‘We’re Good to Go’ Standard, to reassure guests that they can visit Japan House London safely.
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