Photography : Katsuhide Morimoto (little friends)

My Archive


2018.03.17(SAT) - 04.12(THU)

EYE OF GYRE has put on an exhibition by Hiroki Nakamura,
who is the Creative Director of the visvim brand.
Nakamura’s exhibition is titled “My Archive”,
and runs from March 17 to April 12 at GYRE on Omotesando.
This exhibition coincides with Magazine House launching a book of Nakamura’s essays.
The book is also called My Archive, and it contains essays
that have been serialized in POPEYE magazine.
The exhibition complements the book by presenting a large number of actual items
from Nakamura’s personal collection - pieces that encapsulate
the beauty of the handmade process and act as his source of inspiration.
This is an amazing opportunity to get a close look at all these vintage items.
On the day before the opening, most of the setup was complete,
so Nakamura took the time to show us round the exhibition.

The “My Archive” exhibition gives you a vicarious experience -
a chance to trace Nakamura’s creative process by sensing
what he found inspiring in the articles that he added to his archive.
Seeing such a large collection,
you can begin to think about how he selected the items, and how they inspired new ideas.
Along with the exhibition, we present an interview with Hiroki Nakamura, recorded at his home.

Interview with Hiroki Nakamura Making Products Begins with Emotional Resonance

Photography: Kiyotaka Hatanaka(UM) Interview & Text: Kosuke Ide Edit:Yasuyuki Takase, Naoe Hanamido(EATer)

My Archive is a series of essays by Hiroki Nakamura, Creative Director of the visvim brand, and which first appeared in POPEYE magazine in June 2012. Nakamura’s essays feature vintage pieces that have provided inspiration for his creative process of making products. Every month, Nakamura has revealed fascinating items from different times in history and from divers’e locations encompassing both the East and the West, that have continued to surprise and delight readers.
These items include Native American leather moccasins, a natural dyed Tibetan blanket, a hat worn by an Ethiopian ethnic minority, a shepherd’s umbrella from Alsace in France, an Amish child’s outfit and Inuit snow goggles through to a Japanese fire - fighter’s happi coat from the Edo Period. Of interest is the fact that, in contrast to the conventional collector who collects items from a specific time or region or products by a specific creator or brand, Nakamura selects a wide range of items for his collection, without being restricted by category.

I Choose What I’m Instinctively Drawn to and Like.

We asked Nakamura, as he prepares for this exhibition showcasing items that he has personally selected from his collection, about his thoughts behind the selection of items, how these are used, and how they influence his creativity.

“I don’t actually know for sure what the selection criteria are. It’s instinctive. I just select something that I impulsively feel is good. The impulse comes first, followed by giving it meaning from an intellectual perspective. This order is extremely important, because I think something essential is lost when it’s the other way around. When a product’s being sold, it often comes as part of a set, in the sense that it’s accompanied by some sort of context, such as its history, brand or scarcity value. However, being aware of the product’s profile doesn’t necessary mean you ‘get’ that product. That’s because it doesn’t speak to your sensibility. Sensibility is something that’s extremely important to me. A new product is created by first linking my emotional response to my intellectual response and process, and then to explore this in my own way and reconstruct it. That’s why I always want to look at something without any preconceptions. It’s not easy to do, but I always remain very conscious of this.”

Techniques from the past are slowly being forgotten or have become completely forgotten. However, according to Nakamura, he doesn’t aim to simply revive form or technique in a way that’s superficial.

“Much of what normally inspires me are handmade items or things made from natural materials or using traditional techniques, but this doesn’t mean that I simply want to preserve traditional handicraft or cultures. I want to create something new that has meaning in or relevance to contemporary life by conveying the universal values and beauty that lies in the things that were created in the past. That’s why it’s not about valuing something just because it’s old, nor does it mean that I want to faithfully recreate old things. It’s simply because, compared to these contemporary times, there’s a clear rationale behind items made in the past, with many of these items conveying something pure. We want to continue to be aware of the creative process behind these simple items and to pass on these universal values to the next generation.”

I’m Drawn to Things That are Uneven.

My Archive Interview with Hiroki Nakamura

What’s the essence behind the universal values and beauty
of handmade items that resonates with you?

“With the advancement of technology, you could say that everything in this digital world has become flat. However, I’m drawn to things that are uneven. That’s because I believe that unevenness represents humanness. For example, the Tibetan robe made with yak fur has been unevenly dyed, while the stitching is also crooked and the silhouette asymmetrical. However, the Tibetans had no intent or awareness of creating something that’s symmetrical. And that’s because perfect symmetry simply doesn’t exist in the natural world. That’s just the way it is. I actually think it’s a bit creepy to place importance on achieving perfection in everything. I’m also drawn to people with unusual personalities, who are unique.”

With the Act of Making Things Comes Responsibility.

My Archive Interview with Hiroki Nakamura

And to conclude, we asked Nakamura about his views on the “SHOP & THINK” concept behind GYRE.

“I believe that the act of making things comes with responsibility, and that’s why I want to create something that has meaning in contemporary life and which will be relevant to the next generation. I want this exhibition, which features items that I’ve been inspired by and which conveys how I interpret them, to be an opportunity to share my product - making process with others. And, more than just conveying the way I personally view things, I hope that these items will resonate in some way with every individual who sees the exhibition.”

Hiroki Nakamura      Creative Director of visvim, born in 1971. Started the brand visvim in 2000 as a footwear brand, adding ready to wear, accessories, and fragrances to the line since then. In 2013 Nakamura also establishes WMV, a women’s line. In 2016 Nakamura was invited to Firenze as one of the guest designers for Pitti Immagine Uomo, where he presented his Spring Summer 2017 collection by conducting the brand’s first ever runway show. In GYRE Nakamura opened his concept store, F.I.L. INDIGO CAMPING TRAILER in 2013, followed up by the opening of the visvim flagship store in 2014.

Hiroki Nakamura

My Archive

2018.3.17(Wed)-2018.4.12(Thu)/11:00-20:00/Open everyday

『My Archive』

Hiroki Nakamura
Magazin House
¥3,800 (w/o tax)