Vol. 113 Individualist “Chptr 4 and Vrs 2”

Following on interview with Takafumi Sekine on Vol. 112 Individualist “Chptr 4 and Vrs 1”.

I was honestly thinking that he was one of the biggest folks in Japanese fashion industries so that I felt little scared to conduct an interview with him. Because people like him are entitled to receive an offer from various media, not just from one random person like me trying to pursue a dream to make it come true.

He was actually featured on international media such as hypebeast. I believe that people from around the world truly appreciate for Japanese’s clean and innovative style. However, I think that Japan is still just one of mere place to be discovered in terms of style. I would like to broadcast our culture from our own way with a little bit of effort to transcribe it from one language to another. There must be always some correction that needs to be made but I do not give a fuck about it. At least you folks could read and get an idea from series of wording and lines of languages. I just want you to keep an eyes on us because including him, we also creates what you want. 





Devoting a great deal of time and effort to continue crafting would be a definition of “dedication and diligence.”




IO) あなたにとって日本語と英語とはなんでしょうか?

関根さん) わかりません。


IO) What does Japanese and English mean to you?

Sekine-san) I have no idea about your question.


IO) 変な質問すいません笑。言葉、言語としてどうお考えですか?

関根さん) 実は英語は話せません。必然的に話さなくてはいけない時はとにかく自分の考えを伝えるのに必死で、うまくコミュニケーション出来ているか。。


IO) Sorry for giving you a weird question. What do you think about them as Languages?

Sekine-san) I do not speak English at all. When I inevitably come across the time where I need to use it, I would be desperate for conveying my thought to others in English. I am not sure if I can communicate with people well or not.


IO) 日本はどんな場所。日本人とは誰であり何か。(あなたの目線、もしくはブランドとして)

関根さん) ファッションにおいては、世界で一番何でも揃う場所ですね。色んな国の主要な都市を見ましたが、原宿のような様々なジャンルのファッションが交錯している都市は無いと思います。


IO) What does Japan, being Japanese mean to you? How do you think it has impacted your life and your success?

Sekine-san) As a fashion-wise, Japan is the best place to get anything in the world. You name it. I had been to many major city in the world but there would be no place like Harajuku that has a mixture of various fashion statement crossing over in one place.


IO) ファッション以外について具体的にはいかがでしょうか?交錯しているとおっしゃっていますがそれについては具体的にはどうお考えですか?

関根さん) ファッション以外には具体的にはわかりません。しかし、交錯している事は刺激的で日本人として生まれて良かったと思います。


IO) Excluding fashion, any thoughts on Japan? You mentioned “crossing over”, what do you have in your mind about that?

Sekine-san) I do not come up with an idea about Japan for now. However, I am proud to be Japanese that place like Harajuku where it is exciting and anything could be crossed over with.


IO) 日本や日本人の良いところと悪いところ。



IO) What do you think are the positive and negative points about being Japanese, and Japanese culture?

Pros: dedication and diligence.

Cons: tendency to say sorry instead of saying thank you at certain occasions. (In Japanese, we use these phrases interchangeably)




IO) まめさ、勤勉さの具体例をお願いします。また悪いところはすごく深いです。こちらも詳しくお伺いしたいです。

関根さん) こちらもファッションに関しての答えになってしまいますが、クオリティーの高さや作業の繊細さは世界に誇れるものだと思います。手間を惜しまず、よいものづくりを続けるという事が「まめさ、勤勉さ」なのではないでしょうか。



IO) Care to elaborate “dedication and diligence’? Also about your cons, this is something really deep to talk about, would you mind talking a bit further about this?

Sekine-san) This is again, an answer that has to do with fashion that creating a high quality product and exquisite work are definitely a characteristic of Japanese to be proud of. I assume that devoting a great deal of time and effort to continue crafting would be a definition of “dedication and diligence”.

As you see Japanese carefully and you might know about our speech and behavior, negative side of us is that we often make an apology instead of an appreciation. I wish we all could say “Thank you” straight-forward.

(This is one of the lingo that it is hard to explain in English, you could get an idea here.)


IO) 日本人として西洋の文化(アメリカ、フランス、イタリア等)への憧れや尊敬、または日本の文化に対する憧れや尊敬は感じていますか?

関根さん) 西洋、日本に関わらず全ての文化に対して尊敬を感じています。そして日本人として日本の文化に誇りを持っています。


IO) As a Japanese/Japanese descendants, for you have any ambition, envy or aspirations against western (U.S. for example) or Japanese cultures? How has Western/Japanese culture influenced you and your creativity? 

Sekine-san) I think I am respectful to all cultures regardless of countries. And as a Japanese, I am proud of my own culture.




IO) 具体的にはどういったところに尊敬、そして日本人として日本の文化に誇りを持っていますか?

関根さん) 土地それぞれの歴史が、長い時間をかけて継承されている事です。上の回答と重なりますが、日本で言えば着物の文化などは誇りに思います。ものづくりに関する職人の文化も誇りですね。


IO) Would you care to elaborate your thought on that?

Sekine-san) History itself of each regions in Japan is inherited over many generations. I am saying this again but I think the culture of Kimono is a subject to respect for. Culture of artisans, craft making are also deserve a respect.


IO) 日本のおかしなところはありますか?

関根さん) 特に思い当たりません。


IO) Is there anything you find strange about Japan as a Japanese/Japanese (American/Canadian/Brazilian)

Sekine-san) does not really ring a bell.


IO) クリエイティブの定義。

関根さん) 思考、経験などの取り巻くものをかたちにする作業。


IO) What is your definition of creativity? How would you define creativity?

Sekine-san) The process of shaping things that surround you such as concept, experience etc..


IO) 人生とは一言/ 一文で何ですか?

関根さん) 死ぬ間際に、服作りを続けてきて心から楽しかったと笑って死ぬ事が出来たら本望ですね。


IO) How would you define life in one sentence?

Sekine-san) I would like to cease to exist smiling and truly be happy for what I have been doing right before the moment I die.




IO) 同業者と差別化を図る方法、秘策。

関根さん) ノーコメント。


IO) Do you have any tips for differentiating yourself from competitors?

Sekine-san) No comment.


IO) 注目している人、ものは?

関根さん) 自然が作り出す造形。


IO) Something that you are currently into? What is a current hobby or interest of yours?

Sekine-san) Figure, shape of natural masterpiece.


I also really wish to cease to exist smiling and truly be happy for what I have been doing right before the moment I die. Or I could die quick hahaha. 



Takafumi Sekine “meagratia”


Copyright of Pictures (C) “meagratia” All Rights Reserved.


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