Friday, March 31, 2017

From the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum Collection

Long before Maura Ò Paì's artisanal brassieres gained a following in North America, her work found great acceptance and support abroad, particularly in Japan.  Collectors, galleries, clothiers favoured her work:  Ò Paì was considered the equal of designers such as Westwood, Hamnett, Rykiel, Kawakubo, Johnson, Prada and Furstenberg.  Japanese collectors were notable for their persistence -- and success -- in securing originals of Ò Paì's brassieres, and also design drawings, something she was notoriously reluctant to part with.  The following images come from the collection in the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum.  They are purchases and gifts from the original collectors, acquired during the tenure of Yoko Tanaka.  Tanaka was an avid admirer of Ò Paì's work and brought a relentless dedication to building a collection of Ò Paì's drawings for the museum.

Other significant collections of Ò Paì's work in Japan are held by the POLA Corporation, the Bridgestone Museum, Daimaru, and the Kawamura Museum.

The Ministry of Culture wishes to thank the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum for their kind use of the following imagery, and in particular Taeko Higashiyama, archivest, for access to the collection.

The Sunflower Brassiere
with matching panties and hoodie

The Yolk of Oppression Brassiere 
with matching toast-point panties

The Pirate's Daughter Brassiere
The Marlow Woodcarver's Brassiere

The Swiss Army Foehn Bagpipe Brassiere

The Living Bra

The Gallerist's Organizer Brassiere

The Gossip's Brassiere
Ò Paì's correspondence indicates this brassiere's design evolved out of a series of personal interactions with Canadian author Margaret Atwood, although the cause or the blame for the antipathy is at this time unknown.

The Dumplings And Rice Brassiere
with matching Fundoshi

The "Chesticles" Knitted Brassiere

The Light Reading Brassiere

The June Bra Entomologist's Brassiere

The Green Tomatoes Training Bra

The Breastpirator Safety Brassiere
for Hazardous Atmospheres
and matching panties

The Avocado Lover's Brassiere
and matching panties

In Greed We Trust Brassiere

le Porte Bébé Brassiere

Hey Kitty Brassiere

Cucina Povera Reggipetto

The Angry Young Brassiere