Today I happened to see something really interesting on NHK world’s “tokyo fashion express” program. They were introducing the REBIRTH PROJECT, which was started by the model and actor Yusuke Iseya (伊勢谷友介). I’m posting their article about it.
Yusuke Iseya: actor, chairman of “Rebirth project”
Rising actor Yusuke Iseya got his start as a magazine and runway model. Now he’s landing prime roles in TV dramas and movies. He also wants to raise awareness about sustainable living. We’ll introduce his Rebirth Project, an initiative to help individuals find their own solutions to the various problems facing society. He’s hoping it will help people create sustainable lifestyles. His focus is on the three basic necessities of clothing, food and housing. We’ll look at his current activities. Clothing is first up, with the redesign and renovation of dead or damaged Lee denim stock. We follow Iseya to Lee’s Okayama factory to watch him select and design denim pieces. In the area of food, we introduce a rice cultivation project in Niigata Prefecture and a music event produced by Takeshi Kobayashi of ap bank fes, including Rebirth’s stall of organic juices and rice balls. As for living spaces, there is the Sensing Nature exhibition at the Mori Art Museum in Roppongi Hills where three well-known Japanese artists explore nature amid urbanization, as well as the Japanese concept of the natural world. For the exhibition, Rebirth was commissioned to design the Nature Book Lounge, which houses about 300 works of Japanese mythology, cosmology and nature photographs. Iseya and his team created shelving and reading areas from recycled flooring, machines and various fixtures taken from a fashion school after renovation. We deliver Yusuke Iseya’s message of artistic sustainability. (http://www.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/english/tv/tokyofashion/index.html on sept.7th, 2010, 19:33)
I didn’t see the whole thing, only the part about recycling jeans. I’m not really a fan of jeans, you see, but his concepts are awesome! For his LEEbirth Project he uses jeans of old stock that wouldn’t sell as raw materials and gives them a new and unique touch. The lightening bolt designs he put on the jeans are really nice. They also showed how he visited a jeans factory to research the different techniques of destructing the material to give the jeans the well-worn look that’s in these days. For making the lightening bolts they actually used LASER BEAMS!!! But what really cought my attention was his reason for taking up his project. He is looking for ways to be more environmental-friendly! In fact, the unused/unsold/outdated/unsellable products of clothes manufacturers are often BURNED! Of course, they try to get rid of them in outlets first, but the remainder, which is quite a lot apparently, is burned. Iseya points out that solutions like donating these stocks to people in earthquake-struck regions, etc. are not an option for companies since they could be accused of trying to avoid taxes (I don’t really see why that should be so, but that’s what I understood from the interview, anyways.) So what he came up with to combat this unnecessary wasting of resources is the LEEbirth project. I feel any project aimed at protecting nature or at least not exploiting it should be promoted. I really respect his approach. I wish there were more people with this understanding♣
One point I started wondering about is this: Why is it always necessary to have famous people stand up for someting like this so it is covered in the media? I guess it’s a fact I don’t like but that can’t be changed (yet). So the only thing that remains to do is to hope that many more well-known people gain a deeper understanding of nature and sustainability♣
♣http://rebirth.heteml.jp/blog/?p=1867 Visit at Lee Factory in Okayama
♣http://rebirth-project.jp/ Rebirth project HP