Designer Ronan Bouroullec on his colourful collaboration with Homme Plissé Issey Miyake

The multidisciplinary French artist and designer saw his colour-soaked drawings reinterpreted by the Homme Plissé Issey Miyake design team as part of the Japanese brand’s menswear show in Paris last week

Issey Miyake runway show
Models backstage at Homme Plissé Issey Miyake A/W 2024, held in Paris last week
(Image credit: Courtesy of Issey Miyake)

The curving white walls of Paris’ Palais de Tokyo were hung with a series of garments adorned with the instinctive, abstract drawings of Ronan Bouroullec, the multidisciplinary designer and artist who creates these works as part of his daily practice (his tool is a set of Japanese felt-tip pens).

They provided the backdrop for Homme Plissé Issey Miyake’s latest menswear show, which featured the various pieces in the collection itself, as well as inspiring its mood. Issey Miyake called it a ’creative session’ rather than a collaboration, an exchange of ideas built on Bouroullec’s previous relationship with the Issey Miyake brand (in 2000, he designed the interior of Issey Miyake’s A-POC store in Paris alongside his brother Erwan).

Ronan Bouroullec’s ‘creative session’ with Homme Plissé Issey Miyake

Homme Plus Issey Miyake show

(Image credit: Courtesy of Issey Miyake)

This is not to say that he jumped immediately at the opportunity, having been famously reticent to see these designs used on clothing or fabrics in the past (though last year, he collaborated with Kvadrat on a series of textiles which recalled the lines and textures of the pieces, which he largely sees as personal and meditative). ‘It’s like a trail that you walk every day until you arrive. You see when you’ve arrived, but you don’t remember what happened while you were walking,’ he told Wallpaper* at the time.

‘I’ve always had a lot of requests from fashion brands, and I always say no,’ Bouroullec says. ’I feel like fashion uses things, and then it goes in the garbage so quickly. But Issey Miyake is different, I know it as a brand. If anything, they started off being too respectful: I told them ”I don’t want you to be polite with me”. I wanted to see something fresh, where they were not seen as a decorative object but part of the design.’

Issey Miyake at Paris Fashion Week Men’s A/W 2024

(Image credit: Courtesy of Issey Miyake)

Indeed, the resulting collection captured the artist’s intuitive approach with silhouettes wrapped around the body in colourful layers and flourishes of Bouroullec’s work appearing throughout. A series of asymmetric scarves, meanwhile, recalled the artist’s expressive, abstract motifs. The collection notes said that it was an exploration of how creative material (here, Bouroullec’s drawings) can be translated into clothing.

‘All the members of the design team are drawn to his work,’ a spokesperson for the Homme Plissé Issey Miyake team tells me backstage at the show. ’We think there’s something really poetic and beautiful about it – you don’t just look at the artwork, you are imagining yourself diving into it. It was a creative, and inspiring, session for us. I think the scarves capture the essence of the collection – one of the design team members had the idea of actually wearing the drawings.’

Issey Miyake runway show

(Image credit: Courtesy of Issey Miyake)

’It’s been extremely interesting because it is like it’s like growing or building an exhibition or painting, colour after colour,’ says Bouroullec. ’All for just fifteen minutes on the runway – it’s extraordinary.’

Fashion Features Editor

Jack Moss is the Fashion Features Editor at Wallpaper*, joining the team in 2022. Having previously been the digital features editor at AnOther and digital editor at 10 and 10 Men magazines, he has also contributed to titles including i-D, Dazed, 10 Magazine, Mr Porter’s The Journal and more, while also featuring in Dazed: 32 Years Confused: The Covers, published by Rizzoli. He is particularly interested in the moments when fashion intersects with other creative disciplines – notably art and design – as well as championing a new generation of international talent and reporting from international fashion weeks. Across his career, he has interviewed the fashion industry’s leading figures, including Rick Owens, Pieter Mulier, Jonathan Anderson, Grace Wales Bonner, Christian Lacroix, Kate Moss and Manolo Blahnik.