26 June 2018: Keisuke Nagami’s Lecture Report

Participants’ Report: “Lecture on Mode” by Keisuke Nagami, HATRA fashion designer, 2018.6.26

-From frontier to Normal – Media and fashion-

(By Marina Yamaha, Media Faculty, Josai International University)

Through this lecture, I had a chance to think about fashion transitions for human beings and life forms from the perspective of fashion design. I found the way of thinking and the view of the world of Mr. Nagami who is the designer of “HATRA” very interesting.

“Read fashion expressions”, based on this big theme as an extension of humanity, Mr. Nagai covered mainly the following three points:

  • Gender resolution
  • Frontier of uncanniness
  • Meaninglessness, irrationality

Here I’d like to introduce these points in order and my ideas.

“Gender resolution”

It was natural for people to wear clothes designed respectively for men and women. However, since the beginning of the popularization of SNS, gender differences began to shake and it started affecting fashion design. In the collection of JW Anderson of 2013, fashion of an entirely new figure which had not been seen before was proposed with the gender borderless design. With that as a start, GUCCI ‘s design for men changed drastically within one year, and the proposal to reconsider about gender in the fashion industry spread.

I caught that the fashion design indicates the gender resolution of the era. In my everyday life I still find a clear difference in fashion design between men and women, but in the future, maybe after ten years, the gap may disappear and the time of selecting clothing design faithfully to their own sensitivity will come. By watching the transition of fashion design industry carefully, I think that the way of thinking of gender in modern times and future will come to be more clearly visible.
“Uncanniness Frontier”
“Uncanniness Frontier” indicates the expansion of the range that human beings can accept, which has been adopted little by little in design from a long time ago. As times and places change, the meaning of things also changes. For example, the aristocratic dresses that showed a big, padded Bustle in the 1870s were regarded as uncanny at first. In a more recent example, in collaboration between Louis Vuitton and Final Fantasy in 2016, Louis Vuitton also showed a challenging and rich creativity, which shows fashion has been and is evolving all the time.

While listening to the story of this uncanniness frontier, I find fresh his description of “new, unprecedented and up to date things” using the word “uncanniness”. The feeling when a person encounters a new thing is not necessarily a positive thing, and it is often negative as it is a threatening and it is uncanny. However, once that uncanniness becomes good for himself and accepted by many people, it will eventually be updated to “normal”. I noticed that the design has expanded and will continue to change through this iteration.

“Meaninglessness ”and ”Irrationality”

The power of imagination that extracts intuition just before the meaning gets into shape by analyzing lots of detailed data. Mr. Nagami expressed them as “meaninglessness” and “irrationality”. I found that this intuition as “meaninglessness” and “irrationality” is to do with individual personalities and that moves people’s mind. A design born in such intuition may make a leap forward in future fashion design.
Based on these, Mr. Nagami says that the users (or recipients of fashion design) can expand their body by updating their own sense of beauty and regarding something uncanny as ordinary and natural design. Understanding a certain fashion design using modern services and freshly making a fusion mean “decoding the body”. And finally, he concluded that the design accepted in the era becomes an ordinary design of that time, and that it would stimulate the generation and the next even if it is not accepted.

Through Ms. Nagami’s interpretation of fashion as an expression, I learned that fashion design is “an area that can be expanded as a self-expression by human beings”. Actually the change fashion in each era represents the male and female images of the time and I felt that modern fashion may slowly be losing its boundaries. In addition, it is possible to fuse clothes fashion with things other than clothes, so in the near future, even the concept of “clothes” may be lost and some digital wearable fashion with a different concept can be born. Also, if you combine media and fashion, which I am studying daily, we can propose various types of fashion to society. Media as a help of smooth cycle of unlocking uncanniness becomes more necessary than ever I think.

For the first time, had a chance to consider about human expansion from a viewpoint of fashion. It was a very meaningful time to know that there are various viewpoints in fashion design as well. I am looking forward to seeing how fashion design will be updated in the future. 

-Uncanniness frontier connects artists, fashion, business-

(By Teppei Fujimoto, Hitotsubashi University)

Until now I always thought that people called “artists” are distant from the business world and are of an unusual people who are pursuing their own sensitivity. But that was a mistake. I learned that they have for a long time played a very important role in the business world. This discovery occurred while I was listening to Mr. Nagami’s lecture and learned “artists are uncanniness adorers.” Mr. Nagami says ” When a person sees something, he sometimes finds it uncanny and sometimes not. Stability is a sense of comfortableness obtained as a result of scraping up pieces of knowledge he already holds about the thing.  Uncanniness emerges when such a stable picture crumbles.” Artists like uncanniness, which general consumers would rather avoid. He however further said using an example in which the sleeve which Vietnamese dubbed suddenly gradually penetrated to general consumers, “Things that modern people find not uncanny used to be taken uncanny before. This frontier, or borderline, which demarcates not uncanny or uncanny, constantly continues to expand.”

Indeed, unless there are artists pursuing uncanniness, the frontier general consumers reach doesn’t move forward. Without them, we would have felt uncanniness looking at the person walking in the city with a T-shirt and a pair of jeans today. In the modern market, companies using IT, including services like Amazon, Google, etc., measure and analyze everything we do in our daily lives and have sophisticated marketing activities. They can suggest what we need even before we do realize what we need. In an “ultimate form of marketing” they can induce people buy things subliminally and that will lead consumption in the future. However, what they can measure and analyze is “the past” at all times. Perhaps it is at best consuming more “jeans” that Google would recommend to people who already wear jeans every day as what they look at as data is always the past.

With the help from artists who pursue and propose uncanniness and spread the frontier, a man who wears jeans everyday might for the first time come up with the idea of trying a new, recently emerging kinds of trousers. “Artists” are not people who are diverting from the business world pursuing their favorite things, but also people who constantly create the way of our self-realization and some seeds for future consumption. I now recognize them as irreplaceable even in the context of marketing.

HATRA ファッションデザイナー 長見佳祐氏講演「モードの輪郭」2018.6.26

@石川台7号館(ELSI-1)1F 三島ホール



城西国際大学メディア学部3年 山羽真梨那



  • ジェンダーの解像度
  • 不気味さのフロンティア
  • 無意味さ、不合理さ
















一橋大学 藤本哲平







26 June 2018: Full House! Keisuke Nagami’s Lecture ended

Thanks for those who came in the heat!

Keisuke Nagami’s speech, presenting the simultaneous  and synchronic reading of “mode”, ended with great success on 26 June 2018.
The participant report can be found here.

Sincere apologies for change of venue to accommodate the large number of audience than we originally expected.


21-28 July 2018: Entry Now! CSMXTokyoTech Wearable Hackathon

Hackathon (design workshop) will be held in July as part of the ongoing Biotechnology Wearable Fashion project. Full House – application closed, thank you!

“Existential Wearables” : In 10 years, what do people wear in Tokyo?

How will what we wear reflect how we feel, how we act and how we want to connect with others? How can a wearable technology enhance or affect how we want to exist as humans? As city populations and demography continue to increase and technology becomes even more embedded in our lives, how can we secure personal space and maintain a sense of freedom? How will our external apparel reflect our internal world – will what we wear help us to communicate, to disconnect or to cooperate with our surroundings?

The Existential Wearables project explores the interface between the body, technology and society to explore possible manifestations for future wearables. We will be facing a number of social issues such as aging, population decline, elderly nursing, immigration, in 10 years’ time in Tokyo. Our community sites including hospitals, schools, streets, offices etc have their strong and weak, good and bad, positive and negative  aspects of each, as if they show their own light and shadow. Considering the issues, expressing our thoughts and emotions, reflecting Tokyo’s history and culture, playing the ideas, we will create Existential Wearables.

Over 8 days we will bring together people from design, biology, art, engineering and technology to speculate through making, for a ‘hackathon’ of collaborative workshops working with programmable textiles and light emitting materials. Prototypes, designs and ideas created will be developed further and presented at a public event in Hikarie in late September 2018, intended to extend the conversation about life enhancing biotechnologies.

Ulrike Oberlack and Heather Barnett from Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London will conduct the hackathon in collaboration with Kayoko Nohara and Hiroshi Tsuda from Tokyo Institute of Technology. Drawing on the ideas generated in the previous fashion cafés and the workshops, students, industry people, artists/designers, and scientists/technologists will work together to build on the emerging ideas, hack materials and build prototypes.

(This is a credit course intended for Tokyo Tech graduate students.)

Hackathon Details:

  • Date: July 21 (Sat) , 22 (Sun if the participants like), 24 (Tue), 25 (Wed), 26 (Thu), 27 (Fri),  28 (Sat)
  • Time: Tuesday-Friday: 18:30-20:30   Saturday: 13:00-15:00 (subject to change according to the designing situation)
  • Venue: Ookayama campus
  • Credit: 1 unit
  • Language: English (assistance will be provided as needed)

Register here. Closed
Inquiry: e-mail to Megumi Hiraki (hiraki.m.aa@m.titech.ac.jp)

Tokyo Institute of Technology, School of Environment and Society: “Biotechnology Fashion” Workshop Project
“Support for Overseas Cultural Projects” 2018, from Arts Council Tokyo

2018 7/21-28 東工大大岡山キャンパス

これまでのカフェイベントやディスカッションでの議論た提案をふまえ、東工大その他の大学生、アーティスト、デザイナー、科学者/エンジニアはじめ多様な職種・専門のメンバーで協働し素材から検討してプロトタイプを作ります。東工大生は単位履修可能:2Q 広域教養科目 LAW.X423。


  • 7月21日(土)13:00 東工大南5号館407Aワークショップルーム
  • 22日(日)13:00 東工大石川台5号館3F デザイン工房
  • 24日(火)18:30 デザイン工房
  • 25日(水)18:30 ワークショップルーム
  • 26日(木)18:30 デザイン工房
  • 27日(金)18:30 デザイン工房
  • 28日(土)13:00 ワークショップルーム

時間: 火 – 金: 18:30-20:30 (現場で延長可能性あり),

土日: 13:00-15:00 (現場で延長可能性あり)


(本学大学院生の場合 単位: 1単位 広域教養科目)

言語: 英語(ただし教員が必要に応じて日本語でアシストします、議論は日本語でも可能)

お申し込みはこちらから:満員御礼! 締め切りました

問い合わせ 教務支援員 開めぐみまで (hiraki.m.aa@m.titech.ac.jp)


2018年 アーツカウンシル東京「海外発文化プロジェクト支援」事業

[OPEN CALL] 26 June 2018: “Contours of Mode”, Guest Lecture by Keisuke Nagami

”Contours of Mode”: Guest lecture by Keisuke Nagami, fashion designer (HATRA)

Photo © personal documentation

Date: Tuesday, 26 June 2020
Time: 18:00~19:30
Venue: Tokyo Institute of Technology, Earth Life Research Institute 102 ELSI Hall
Admission: Free
Language: Japanese

Profile: Keisuke Nagami
Fashion designer, born in Hiroshima, 1987. Studies couture in France and established HATRA, a unisex brand which proposes comfortable clothes fit to the Internet-age environment with “rooms” as the main theme. His recent works include “Future Beauty -Japanese fashion and its future quality-“(Tokyo Met Museum 2012),「JAPANORAMA 」(Le Centre Pompidou-Metz 2017-18 ).

Please register here in advance.

Tokyo Institute of Technology, School of Environment and Society: “Biotechnology Fashion” Workshop Project
“Support for Overseas Cultural Projects” 2018, from Arts Council Tokyo
Sponsor: British Embassy in Japan
Partner: SHINDO

講演 「モードの輪郭」
日付 6月26日(火)18:00~19:30   開場 17:45より
場所 東京工業大学 蔵前会館3F手島精一記念会議室(大岡山駅前1分)
→ 会場変更 東京工業大学 地球生命研究所102 ELSIホール

参加費 無料
講演者 長見佳祐 (HATRA)



「Future Beauty -日本ファッションの未来性-」(2012 東京都現代美術館)、「JAPANORAMA 」(2017-18 ポンピドゥ・センター・メッス)など

2018年 アーツカウンシル東京「海外発文化プロジェクト支援」事業
後援: 駐日英国大使館

3 May 2018: “In 10 years, what do people wear in Tokyo?” Biotechnology Wearable Cafe ~New Material~

“In 10 years, what do people wear in Tokyo?”. Art Council Tokyo Project held on 3 May 2018, Tokyo Tech. Image © Biotechnology Wearable Cafe 2018

Preface to Biotechnology Café Wearable Café
Today, the way we view life is changing. We have diverse narratives about life, including sustaining life by use of biotechnology, genetic engineering, eternal life, peaceful and natural way of dying, and self and the periphery (inorganic, AL, etc.) In fashion, we don’t merely seek only trend and culture, but rather a profound connection to life as well. We need to develop new fashion that makes working easier and wearables to ensure the safety of the elderly, children and the disabled as well as to save life at the time of disaster.
In addition, numerous reports in the media contain voices that appear to suggest in the form of concrete requests how technology should be handled in coming years.

“It’s too painful to connected too closely.”
“I don’t want to die from overwork. I want to have a different work style.”
“It must be extremely hard to be an elderly care giver as well as to receive such care.”
“I want to see children being happy.”
“I want to eat safe food.”
“I want to live in a society where privacy is respected rather than monitored.”  
Behind these voices seems to lie our unconscious sense of impending crisis of the life. In this project, we will create “biotechnology wearables. Through wearables, we will explore how technology should ensure the safety and growth of the individual. It’s a life liberating technology. To this end, we will first think about social context (background) and explore materials.

Endless possibilities of Materials
(Talk by Professor Takeshi Kutani, Professor of School of Materials and Chemical Technology, Tokyo Tech)
Professor Kikutani is a prominent researcher on fiber. He explained how we view materials in terms of biomimesis, (like something similar to human skin), high efficiency, comfortability, health promotion, renewability. Specifically, he mentioned the following as new fiber materials:

  1. Clothes that have the same structure as human skin (biomimesis, health promotion)
  2. Ultimate black fiber (high efficiency)
  3. Fiber colored without dye (high efficiency)
  4. Artificial hair (high efficiency)
  5. Stab-proof, bullet-proof clothes and their weakness (high efficiency)
  6. Fiber materials utilizing softness and elasticity (comfortability, health promotion)
  7. Fiber with logo woven on the cross-section

These are conceivable fiber materials at the current stage. We discussed what potential they would have in the light of today’s social context(background).

Café starts!!
The café event consisted of 6 teams, Team A~F (6 members in each team, 60% of them were students and 40% were members of society.) 2 rounds

Team A:  Wear it as you feel
<Social context> Tokyoite, who are swayed by trend, the media and information input from the market, may be able to gain autonomy if they resharpen their senses and make and wear what they want to wear in a primitive way. It would be also possible to construct new concept for intellectual property, designer identity, distribution channels, and industry system. It is to be noted that our discussion is based on the assumed medical advancement and population increase as a result of inflex of foreign workers in the next 10 years.
<Material> Morpho butterfly’s biological replication technology, and highly stretchable advanced fiber material for good individual size adjustment
<Final idea> We propose primitive and liberating clothes making using a 3D printer, which makes it possible to wear what one feel like wearing on each day. Size and color can be adjustable to a certain degree by dial on the printer. Designs by professional designers are preinstalled as software and downloadable. It would be interesting if the current condition of the wearer, which he/she is unaware of, could be reflected in the design by using the printer in conjunction with a sensor. Material is inserted into the printer just like ink, and after making clothes, it can be used as ink again.
(Facilitator/reporter: Kayoko Nohara)

Team B: Clothes that could be worn for life
<Social context>Clothing is a boundary between self and world/society, or between the private and the public.
<Material>Biomimetics of morph butterfly and elastic fiber material allowing individual size adjustment
<Final idea>Wearing a piece of cloth that one can transform freely. Size (fitting and compression) can be tailored to one’s taste. Color is also adjustable by coloring biomimetic technology. It can be fitted to the size of a child as he/she grows, which makes it unnecessary to dispose old clothes nor buy new ones. These are sustainable clothes made of a piece of cloth that could be worn for life. Expressing self becomes easier because it can be designed to fit to one’s taste. It also frees people from conforming to the custom in which they try to follow fashion trends and wear what others wear. So far this sort of social norm has been widespread and dictated what people should wear. Social norm and peer pressure of this sort may be broken in a good sense if people from all walks of life start wearing what they like.
(Facilitator/reporter: Izumi Watahiki)

Team C: Wearable RIZAP
<Social context>One interesting idea that came up other than the final idea was to wear makeup by just covering up the face with a transparent cloth. One could finish the make-up process by using this cloth when pressed for time in the morning. This cloth also could be used to hide the parts of your face you don’t want to show, for example for covering up unshaved parts of your face or blocking ultraviolet rays. “Hiding what you don’t want to show” may be linked to Japanese mentality.
<Final idea> This cloth is something like a controlling undergarment which prevents overeating and overnutrition and corrects posture. It also has a feature to monitor activity level. The purpose of this device is for health maintenance and management. Light and elastic material is ideal.
(Facilitator/reporter: Tomomi Wada)

Team D: Safe to wear, safe to put on
<Social context> Some members expressed discomfort they experience on a packed train where they are pressed against strangers but unable to push them back because of their small frames. This led us to think about developing function to create personal space. We also tried to incorporate some social problems into our idea. They included fear of falling victim to crime, health-related concerns such as air pollution, pandemic and overuse of mobile devices in city life. One proposed idea was to have clothes that enable us to share our feeling and emotions with people around us without use of language. For example, at a live concert, audience could express their excitement by the light of the clothes they wear, which is incorporated into the production to create a performer- audience united live concert experience.
<Final idea> We came up with a function that has a structure enabling to take out hoods and cloaks made of transparent and durable material whenever necessary from a choker-shaped device. It also inflates hoods and cloaks. This function helps to have personal space in crowed spaces and protect the wearer in the face of menace by a prowler. Furthermore, because of its transparency, it allows us to enjoy fashion as well as enjoy as an entertainment by making it of shinning material. Some of the other additional functions proposed include built-in solar power generation to charge mobile devices and antimicrobial/disproof processing that provides protection from hay, virus and PM2.5. (Facilitator/reporter: Ayano Nagata)

<Social context>
1. Automation → Something that navigates dwellers moving in public spaces             
2. Sense of isolation → Could connect people who have same interests in the community as SNS do    
3.    Lack of space → Stylish clothes which save storage space
4. Overconcentration of population, congestion  → Secure personal space by wearables
5. Work-related stress → Something that makes stress visible so that others could notice it
<Material> Biomimetic technology materials (materials that look different depending on the reflection of light like the surface of morpho butterfly wings)
<Final idea> One piece all in one jacket that is suitable for summer / winter climate in Japan and versatile to reproduce colors and patterns that match various business scenes. Its smart textile in conjunction with hardware could keep you stay cool in summer and warm in winter. It could change color and pattern freely, so you could respond seamlessly to changes in the scene. Tokyo is a hub for business and fashion where people’s appearance is important. It is an idea that draws on the social background where the clothes for each season are necessary and storage space is limited in small houses.
(Facilitator/reporter: Kengo Arai)

Team F: Stay personal
<Final idea> There was a proposal from students who took up the noise problem that every personal space could be secured by not onlyblocking the sound from outside but also removing all the sounds emitted within the house. As a solution, we thought of wearables based on the concept of creating a personal space that could be insulated. So, we started with the idea of covering the mouth when emitting sound and coving the ears when wishing to block the sound coming from the outside, which led to what we can remove when it is not used.
The hood and the part covering the neck would be made of sound insulation material with a built-in speaker in the part covering the ears and a built-in microphone in the part covering the mouth. This way, it would be possible to establish a personal space anywhere as well as use it in conjunction with a mobile phone using Bluetooth.
(Facilitator/reporter: Shogo Egashira)

[Future tasks]
It is worth noting that an appropriate sense of distance between self and world, and problems concerning personal space surfaced in many team discussions. A good sense of distance is important for human emotions and existence, and for the matter maintenance of life. Although it is easy to focus only on ideas for ​developing devices, I think that our next task would be how to realize it in terms of securing personal space. In modern thought, “not being connected too much” (Masaya Chiba, philosopher) is beginning to be advocated so as not to create a society where individuals are kept under mutual surveillance by being too tied. It is not an overstatement, I feel, to say that this is a social issue that we need to deal with for the protection of our lives.
(Facilitator & reporter: Hiroshi Tsuda)

(Photos © Nohara Lab 2018)


―生命体テクノロジーウェアラブルカフェ ~新素材編~
5月3日 東工大蔵前会館大会議室開催



素材の世界 鞠谷雄士先生(東工大物質理工学院材料系教授)のお話。






【コピー】「一生着られる服」 (Bチーム)



【コピー】”SMART WEAR 2028″(Eチーム バイリンガル組)
【社会的コンテキスト】東京の Social Context を示唆させる写真を参考にしながら、10 年後に東京に住む人が抱えるであろう問題と、その解決策となり得るアイテアの元をポストイットに列挙していった。出て来たポストイットをグルーヒングしたところ、以下のような項目に大きくまとめられた。

  1. 自動化 → 公共空間を移動する生活者をナビゲートする何か?
  2. 孤独感 → SNS のように、街中で同じ趣味を持つ知らない人をつなげられる?
  3. スペースの不足 → 保管場所を節約できるスマートな服?
  4. 人口の一極集中・混雑 → ハーソナルな空間をウェアラブルで確保する?
  5. 仕事によるストレス → ストレスを可視化して他人に気づいてもらえる何か?

1 と 5 についてより深く考えてみた。しかし、1 は必ずしもウェアラブルでなくてもよいと気づき、また 5 についてはストレスを可視化するメリットについて深掘りすることができず、結局一番イメージしやすい 3 を選んだ。対象とする服のアイテムや、服の機能について意見を出し合いながらアイデアをより明確にしていった。
【最終アイデア】1 枚で、日本の夏・冬の気候に適した機能性、および様々なビジネスシーンに合う色・柄を再現する多目的性を備えたオールインワンジャケット。ハードウェアと連携したスマートテキスタイルで夏は涼しく、冬は暖かく着ることができ、また、色や柄を変幻自在に変えられることで、シーンの変化にシームレスに対応できる。東京は人の見た目が重視されるビジネスやファッションの拠点であるが、四季ごとの衣服が必要であり、なおかつ住居が狭いことから保管スペースの余裕がないという社会的背景を汲み取ったアイデアである。

【コピー】”Stay Personal”(Fチーム)
【最終決定アイデア】 騒音問題をとりあげた学生から、外からの音を妨げるだけでなく自分の家から発される音を取り除くことで、あらゆる個人空間が守られるのではないかと提案があった。それをウェアラブルなものに応用するという方向性で議論を進めていくことにした。騒音問題に絞らず、外部からの騒音の影響で困ったことがあるか、逆に騒音を出すようなことをしたことがあるのかという観点から考えてみると以下のことが挙げられた.
フードやネック部分は、遮音素材てもちろんとし耳部にはスピーカーが内蔵、口部にはマイクが内蔵されている。それを通して、どこにいてもパーソナルスペースを確立させる事ができBluetooth を用いた携帯電話との連携も可能と考え、最終提案とした。

カフェのチームの多くで、人と人、自分と世界の適切な距離感、パーソナルスペースの問題が顕在化したのは注目に値します。ほどよい距離感は、人間の感情や存在、ひいては生命の維持にとって大切なのではないか。デバイスのアイデアだけに注意がいきやすいが、それをパーソナルスペース確保に置いていかに実現するか、今後の問題となるように思います。現代思想でも、つながりすぎることによって相互監視社会を実現してしまうことに対して「つながりすぎないこと」(哲学者 千葉雅也)が提唱され始めています。大げさではなく個人の命を守るためにも、現代の非常な社会課題ではないでしょうか。

今回のカフェから言えること、10年後の東京とは? 個人間のパーソナル空間が適切に守られ、たいがいに干渉しすぎず、自分流のインディペンデントなウェアラブルを着て、プリミティブな生命感が細部から出ている人々の都市でしょうか。新しい生命体都市? また、そうした個々人の生命と生活を守り、ウェアラブルを通してひとを成長させるテクノロジーができているなら、それはわたしたちの大きな挑戦となるのでしょう。
(司会・リポート 津田広志)


3 May 2018: Full House! Biotechnology Wearable Cafe ~New Material~

In ten years, what do people wear in Tokyo?

We held an Art and Science cafe under this simple theme.

Date & Time: May 3, 2018, 13:00~16:00
Venue: 2F Meeting Room, Kuramae Kaikan, Tokyo Institute of Technology

About 50 participants gathered on the holiday and discuss about the future wearable based on the life value, societal issues, and new material information.

The first-person in the field of fiber material, Prof. Kikutani delivered a lecture on the world of materials. High performance, comfort, health, environment, beauty…While pursuing diverse values, the development of fibers is actually beyond our imagination. We should catch up with the advanced development and aim at even one more step ahead.

Check the full report here!

Workshop Project: “Biotechnology Fashion”, School of Environment and Society, Tokyo Institute of Technology.
Support Project of 2018 Arts Council Tokyo





繊維研究第一人者、鞠谷先生によるレク「素材の世界」。高性能、快適、健康、環境、美しさ… 多様な価値を探求しながら、繊維の開発は私たちの想像をはるかに超えて先を行っている。私たちの思考は追いつき、その先を目指せるか。レポートこちら

2018年 アーツカウンシル東京「海外発文化プロジェクト支援」事業

[OPEN CALL] Biotechnology Wearable Cafe ~New Material~

In ten years, what do people wear in Tokyo?

The sense of value towards life has been changing. The change is due to development such as life maintained and gene manipulation by Biotechnology. Life that continue eternally and death naturally with ease. The discussions will cover diverse aspects of life.

Fashion is beyond trend and culture. It is also deeply involved with life. We face challenges to develop fashion that is suitable for working, protects the seniors, children, the disabled, and especially during disasters.

In the near future, Technology, Fashion, and Wearable will inter-connect with one another. We wonder what kind of living city will Tokyo turn into and what we should discuss and consider now.

“In ten years, what do people wear in Tokyo?”
With this simple theme on our mind, we opened an Art and Science Cafe.
Based of value towards life, technology, societal issues, and new materials available, we will deepen the discussions.

We would like to hear voices from engineers, material developers, and YOUR inspirations.
As a citizen, or as a brief visitor, please let us hear your voices. The final ideas and proposals will be shared with Central Saint Martins and released on a website dedicated to this project.

Date & Time: May 3, 2018, 13:00~16:00
Venue: 2F Meeting Room, Kuramae Kaikan, Tokyo Institute of Technology
Free of charge

Application by May 1.

Workshop Project: “Biotechnology Fashion”, School of Environment and Society, Tokyo Institute of Technology.
Support Project of 2018 Arts Council Tokyo


生命体テクノロジーウェアラブルカフェ ~新素材編~ 開催! 満員御礼 お申し込み締め切らせていただきました。




日時:2018年5月3日(木・祝) 13:00~16:00
東京工業大学蔵前会館2階 大会議室(大岡山駅から1分)

参加お申し込みはこちらから  満員御礼 ごめんなさい締め切らせていただきました!


2018年 アーツカウンシル東京「海外発文化プロジェクト支援」事業

Biotechnology Wearable Cafe 3

The final workshop is creative thinking at the aquarium with Heather Burnett!

Date: Friday, 23 March 2020
Time: 15:00
Place: AQUA PARK Shinagawa (gathering place: in front of ticket gate of O-Okayama station)

※Transportation expenses and aquarium admission ticket (2,200 yen), each to pay your own fare.

ALL welcome! If you could join, please let us know by Thursday.

Inquiry: Deep Mode Secretariat


最終回はヘザー・バーネット氏と水族館でcreative thinking!






Deep Mode事務局

12 March 2018: Art and Science Cafe by Heather Barnett “Many Headed: co-creating with the collective” @Hikarie, Shibuya

On May 12th, 2018, Art and Science Cafe “Many Headed: co-creating with the collective” was held with at the Shibuya Hikarie by the facilitation of Dr. Heather Barnett from University of the Arts London Central Sains Martins.

Heather Barnett’s presentation.  Photo © Shibuya Hikarie 8 2018

This event explored living systems from an art perspective, and used these ideas to think creatively about the possibilities of what Wearables could be, how they could function and be worn. As an exercise in thinking through making this event was spurred by a thought experiment: playing with randomly selected variables to generate ideas. From lists of ‘biological systems’, ‘communication devices’ and ‘parts of the body’, a roll of the dice decided which items were selected, provoking imaginative and creative speculations for the wearables of the near future.

Group Works and Presentation.  Photo © Nohara Lab 2018

Following the lecture by Heather, the participants were divided into groups and each group gave a presentation. As the participant, Suwa Aoi from the University of Arts accounted, Bioart was interesting for her to think about who was the subject that carried out the role of expressing and communicating. Another member also shared that there was similarity between the movement of the fungi and that of the society and finance.

Started from Heather’s practices and design, the discussions developed and encompassed a reconsideration of the larger structure of the society, animism, body, urban space, and biotechnology. This stimulating event called for further thinking of those taken for granted in our daily life.

Event Reflection

(by Aoi Suwa, Tokyo University of the Arts, Department of Painting)

In this Art and Science Cafe “Many Headed: co-creating with the collective”, the participants were invited to appreciate Dr. Heather Barnett’s artistic approach to slime molds, and expands the discussion about what it means for humans and other organisms to coexist, what is “life”, and what kind of symbiosis could be realized in the mega city of “Tokyo”.

The event outline was a lecture by Dr. Heather and brief discussion with the members at venue, followed with workshop and discussion in groups divided by specialties. In the introductory lecture, Dr. Heather explained about what slime molds are and her past works. She shared the finding of how community could be observed from the structure of real organisms, and raised the possibility of how they might be greatly useful for our human society.

I also watched Dr. Heather’s video on TED, so I was very excited to listen her lecture in live. At that time, she asked one question: “How can a biological system such as slime mold can be useful for your work (life)?”. For me who was in the fine art field, I found this question surprisingly difficult. Even if there are various possibilities for applying biological systems to design field, when considering about how to express them, I feel like the slime molds are already too attractive by themselves, or rather already completed beings with no need for further value addition. Even if we were to present slime molds as themselves, do we really need an artist there? Can we call the presenter as artist?–and so on–many questions that cannot be easily answered began to emerge.

I honestly talked about them with my fellow friends from art field and they immediately sympathized with them. When I think about bio-art and about who the artist is, I feel that when the living thing or biological system is in the medium, they do not just function as medium but also serve as the expression. In such case, I feel like the one who do the expression in a true sense is not the human who set the situation but the inhuman being instead.

When being confronted in such position, I think there are various ways in which our human expressions can become more advanced without just leave them to non-human beings. However, they are more likely to be the clues to the reality that can be felt through the human body, and I believe it is a grand question that can only be answered by steady exploration. Since it leads to the phenomenon and problem representation of my graduation thesis work, I would like to continue thinking about it.

Next, one person from the same table group showed us video of similar creatures and talked about the structure of electronic money called blockchain. Certainly, the reason why the movement of slime molds feel similar to the movement of sociology and finance is probably because the predation and economic activities are related to the instinctive profits and losses of living things, and I felt the reality there. I also thought that the biological system of slime molds is indeed a community,and it has high affinity image with social community that has similar structure.

After that, each group briefly present the content of discussion and Dr. Heather summarized it. After a short break, Dr. Heather showed some practical activities through videos. The content of the video focused on how humans can think of a community system just like slime molds, and how people become “slime molds” by performing movements inside certain space (probably a maze), with holding hands together and eyes closed. I felt a very strong sociological point of view from there. Dr. Heather presentation made me to think about the “how to coexist” message and obtained many hints for overcoming what is going to happen on this earth from now on.

Also, just like when I heard about it during lecture from Prof. Betty Marenko of CSM University of the Arts London who came to Tokyo Tech, the word of “animism” was repeatedly used as a keyword. It left strong impression and started to connect together in my head. It is probably because while it is a fresh way of thinking, it also felt familiar. When I think about where the familiarity comes from, I feel they are very much like Eastern ideas. In a sense, it may feel novel that the ideas that have been taken for granted as an Eastern view are being spoken in Western languages. I felt the strength of the ideological structure, which seems to be based on logic even under such uncertainty that has never been seen before.

Furthermore, such feelings will be further enhanced in the workshops that followed. After the lecture, we were divided into groups of somewhat equal numbers of person from art field, science field, and other professionals, and we began new work. First of all, we were asked to list 6 for each “biological system”, “communication means”, and “part of body”. After listing, Dr. Heather rolled three-colored dices. We were instructed to discuss and think about ideas in groups using the words with the numbers corresponding to the dice rolls.

My group was designated as “biological system: fingerprint”, “communication means: Morse code”, and “part of body: eyes”. Various voice of confusions came from each group, but I personally think that the topics our group obtained was relatively easy to be thought about.

From the argument that Morse code does not necessarily have to be digital, it progressed to the talk that even fingerprints do not have to be so-called fingerprint authentication. With further advice from Dr. Heather about how to convey the focus of the story and to whom, we managed to deepen the basic story. I also talked about the fact that art works are exactly the same, and that theaters are a typical example of such system. 

I talked about how in theater, the performers on the stage also express and communicate with the other performers on the stage, and that there is a composition where many people see that limited situation.I tried to connect it with that even when a specific person communicates with a specific person using some kind of fingerprint, it is possible that the majority of other people can also see it. We were able to deepen the discussion on it, bur Dr. Heather rolled the dice for the second time around that, and since it also seemed to be interesting, the discussion moved to the second combination.

This time, we got “Biological system: Authentication”, “Communication means: Carrier pigeon”, and “Part of body: Claws”. This time, it was not a bad combination, but I think that a word that can’t be ignored: ‘carrier pigeon’ would be the center of theme. In a sense, the discussion spread to the opposite vector from previously, and we started to bring the discussion direction to what about attaching GPS to the claws of the carrier pigeon so that it can be tracked. I feel it’s like a dream to be able to combine modern technology with mechanism that was once commonly used. Further discussions evolved into the possibility that the pigeon trajectory data obtained by the GPS could be used for something else. At that point, I felt that the trajectory that the pigeon showed was already a message, and it was not necessary to carry some conventional documents. When I proposed it, some people in the group sympathized with it so we concluded the discussion to that direction.

The beginning lecture about slime molds by Dr. Heather was also a stimulus, and it became a talk that if slime molds draw a two-dimensional world, then the trajectory drawn by pigeon will be three-dimensional, and it was very exciting discussion. During the presentation, we presented those ideas as pigeons that do not carrying things, but instead use the location information as media art works. While talking and considering about what is required for this time theme, after thinking about it again, it might be better to put at the core of the message that the invisible shape of the city could be highlighted by flying pigeons around Tokyo.

Other groups also presented about very unique ideas, such as signal that can express emotions with color, nail pet that can visualize and keep invisible bacteria on the nails, and educational ideas that allow us to think of a city as an intestine and learn about the properties of oil and water in it.

I originally thought that these kind of group works tend to end up become things that unrealistic, or conversely, too realistic in the common case. But, Dr. Heather’s skillful gimmicks has enabled the certain amount of absurdity and the logic part that can be derived from it being mixed very well. I felt the exquisite balance that I have felt since the beginning of the lecture, and I could enjoy it like a game while also easily have the logic in the output of ideas.

I wondered if Dr. Heather’s works were also born in this kind of way. It was a very exciting group work where I was able to witness a piece of Dr. Heather’s style of design-thinking. I am really honored to be able to participate in a project that could bring a feeling of thinking like this.

I become very interested in the future projects of the professors, and was very looking forward to participate since the content is closely related to what I have been thinking for my art production. Thank you Dr. Heather, Prof. Nohara, and everyone involved for this wonderful opportunity!

Aoi Suwa, Tokyo University of the Arts, Department of Painting

渋谷ヒカリエ8F COURT.  Photo © Nohara Lab 2018


ヘザー・バーネット先生によるイベント体験記録/渋谷ヒカリエ8F COURTにて

3月12日、東工大「生命体テクノロジーウェアラブルカフェ」の一環である、ヘザー・バーネット先生によるワークショップイベント「Many Headed: co-creating with the collective」が渋谷ヒカリエ8Fにて開催されました。



Photo © Nohara Lab 2018














Photo © Nohara Lab 2018





レポート: 東京芸術大学絵画科油画専攻4年 諏訪葵