'Yuragi' (Fluctuation) textile by Junichi Arai
Junichi Arai was born in 1932 in Kiryu, the centre of textile production in Gumma (aka Gunma) prefecture in Japan. He is a textile designer and weaver renowned worldwide for his often ground-breaking experimental textile work combining the traditional materials, techniques and aesthetics with the latest fabrics and technologies. When Arai, from a family of weavers, inherited his father's business, he introduced a fresh approach to textile production. Part of Arai's approach involves the use of ordinary machines and materials in extraordinary ways. Rather than printing on fabric or weaving decoration into it, for instance, he creates designed objects from the cloth itself. The sculptural piece 'Yuragi (Fluctuation)' in polyester and nylon is an excellent example of Arai's work.
Arai is closely involved with the innovative Tokyo-based textile design company, Nuno Corporation and is renowned for his work combining art and fashion. He has created remarkable fabrics used by a number of well-known fashion designers including Rei Kawakubo, Yoji Yamamoto, Yoshiki Hishinuma and Issey Miyake. He also teaches at the Otsuka Textile Design Institute where his former collaborator, the weaver Hideko Takahashi, was once his student.