PUBROBE: 100 Years of Clothing|Ideation with Art Students

On June 18, artist Yoshinari Nishio and the members of "Pubrobe: 100 Years of Clothing," one of the Linkages in the Tokyo Biennale 2023, held a meeting with art students who gathered at NIshio's invitation.

Pubrobe, meaning "public wardrobe," is a project that artist Yoshinari Nishio has been developing around Japan as a way to create a public wardrobe that anyone can use, like a library of clothes. For the Tokyo Biennale 2023, clothes worn by people in the 100 years since the Great Kanto Earthquake will be solicited to compose the wardrobe. The venue, Ebihara Shoten at Kanda, a kanban kenchiku [signboard building] (2-3 story wooden shop and residence with only the front facade covered and decorated with fire-resistant materials) built during the post-disaster reconstruction period, had been dealing in used clothing, ready-to-wear clothing, fabrics, and other clothing-related products.

This time, they will use this location as a base to create a public and open space/community museum of clothing. Preparations will be made during the summer period of the biennale, and during the fall period, various activities will be held, such as lending out clothing, making replicas of clothing, and holding events, in order to connect 100 years of time and lifestyle culture to the future of Tokyo.



At the meeting, many ideas were exchanged, including

  1. How to collect 100 years' worth of clothes from the Great Kanto Earthquake.
  2. How to reproduce or remake replicas of old clothes.
  3. How to show 100 years' worth of clothes in the venue space.
  4. How to set up a special event to spend time in the "clothing library," the Pubrobe.


The project is currently seeking donations of clothing for the project. If you would like to help, please see the following.

PUBROBE: 100 Years of Clothing | Donations of Clothing

NISHIO Yoshinari + 403architecture [dajiba], <em>Pubrobe</em>, 2016.  Installation view at Aichi Triennale 2016, Aichi Prefectural Museum of Art Photo by Yoshihiro Kikuyama


PUBROBE: 100 Years of Clothing

Collecting clothes from 100 years since the Great Kanto Earthquake, and make a clothing library in a former shop that had remained from the time of the earthquake reconstruction.