Minaret Dress

Issey Miyake (Japanese, b.1938)1995

Cincinnati Art Museum

Cincinnati Art Museum
Cincinnati, United States

Issey Miyake has been producing groundbreaking collections since 1971, when he showed his first collection in New York. He does not conform to the dictates of seasonal fashion. His designs do not go out of style because they have little relation to contemporary trends.

With strong roots in his native Japan, Miyake often uses elements of traditional Japanese dress for modern purposes. Utilizing the kimono’s basic concept of space between the body and the cloth, his designs allow the wearer and the garment to interact. Miyake’s clothing is not complete until it is placed on the body. Movement and the wearer’s creativity in arranging the clothing to suit his or her own desires are required to bring the garments to life.

Miyake is fascinated with textile technology. His fabrics are an important component in the adjustability, comfort, and individual expression of his clothes. Miyake's best-known designs are created from permanently twisted, crumpled, wrinkled, pleated, and folded fabrics that are lightweight and fit any body type.

This piece acquired its name because it resembles a minaret—a slender tower with projecting balconies. Miyake constructed the dress of pleated polyester in two shades of orange and green, made sculptural by a succession of hoops. The garment sways and bounces with the wearer’s movements. Essentially, it is a kinetic sculpture that happens to be a dress.


  • Title: Minaret Dress
  • Creator: Issey Miyake (Japanese, b.1938)
  • Creator Lifespan: 1935
  • Creator Nationality: Japanese
  • Creator Gender: Male
  • Creator Birth Place: Hiroshima, Japan
  • Date Created: 1995
  • Location Created: Tokyo, Japan
  • Credit Line: Gift of Miyake Design Studio in memory of Otto Charles Thieme
  • Accession Number: 1997.6
  • Type: Costume and Accessory
  • Medium: Polyester

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