Silence of Shadows
by Jin Kay

| 3 comments
Silence of Shadows by Jin Kay

The solid and the ephemeral combine in this collection of garments by New York designer Jin Kay, inspired by the themes of a 1930s Japanese novel.

Silence of Shadows by Jin Kay

The contrasting weights and opacities of the clothing are intended to represent the way western and eastern cultures are compared in the book In Praise of Shadows by Junichiro Tanizaki.

Silence of Shadows by Jin Kay

A variety of black fabrics are folded and wrapped to build up the layers that form each garment.

Silence of Shadows by Jin Kay

The asymmetric silhouettes are exaggerated by slight changes to the drape of each layer of fabric.

Silence of Shadows by Jin Kay

See more fashion stories here.

Silence of Shadows by Jin Kay

Here is some more information from the designer:


New York, July 10, 2012 – Jin Kay is proud to present his first collection in New York City. The pre-fall women’s ready-to-wear collection is inspired by the book In Praise of Shadows and it has been recently distinguished with the 2012 Designer of the Year Award from Parsons The New School for Design in New York.

This pre-fall women’s ready-to-wear collection is inspired by the book In Praise of Shadows by Junichiro Tanizaki. The book was written in the 1930’s and it compares the definition of beauty between East and West. While the Western World celebrates the beauty that’s exposed and revealed, the East rejoices everything that is hidden, quiet and mysterious.  This collection is a compositional analysis of all those ephemeral elements and it is an exploration of the diverse and unique qualities of shadows.

Silence of Shadows by Jin Kay

Some shades in the collection are multiplied and distorted by the reflecting surface, and sometimes they can seem to have contradictory qualities. They can appear to be heavy and fragile, obscure and light, organic and rectilinear, solid and porous. All these different qualities create compelling compositions of depth, light and monochromatic hues.

The color scheme of the collection is based in a limited palette of black tones, with an emphasis on lightness, transparency, and intricate details. Black can be defined as a color that does not create or mirror any light. It absorbs all the light around and it enhances the pure study of shadows. Meticulous detailing is subdued and integral to the nature of the fabrics being assembled, rather than exaggerated.

Silence of Shadows by Jin Kay

The light weighted fabrics (organza and chiffon) and heavy fabrics (wool, polyester and synthetic leather) create a contrast that echoes the general idea of light and shadow. Different layers of chiffon and organza create depth and different tones of shades.  Additionally the general silhouettes have a mix of solid, thick and heavy characteristics that contrast with some delicate, light, asymmetrical and organic lines.

Every piece in the collection is inspired in the book by Junichiro Tanizaki. Every part has intrinsic qualities of mistiness and silence. As mentioned in the foreword of the book, darkness illuminates for us a culture very different from our own; but at the same time it helps us to look deep into ourselves to our own inhabitation of our world. This collection is an essay on the ephemeral qualities of light and silence, and a celebration of shadows.

Silence of Shadows by Jin Kay

About Jin Kay

Fashion Designer, Jin Kay (Jin Woo Kim) was born and raised in South Korea. During his early years in Seoul, Busan, and Long Island he developed a creative sensibility that is rooted in a very conceptual and poetic design philosophy. His appreciation for art and design evolved and expanded after relocating to the highly competitive cultural scene of New York City.

In 2005, Jin Kay was admitted at the prestigious Parsons The New School for Design, and since then he has been nominated and recognized with some of the most prominent honors available in the Fashion industry. In 2007 he received the AFT International Fashion Award as well as an International Scholarship from Parsons School of Design for excelling in Design. In 2010 SAGA FURS selected him as one of the Top 5 Finalists for an Accessory line and in 2011 the CFDA selected him as one of the Top 10 Designers with Honorable Mention. Most recently he was the recipient of the D2 North America Award, he was selected to be part of a Design Workshop organized by the LVMH Group in New York City, and he has been distinguished as 2012 Designer of the Year from Parsons School of Design.

  • Edgar Almaguer

    Truly inspiring and beautiful collection. I read the book and this collection translates the general message of the book by Junichiro Tanizaki. Simply stunning!

  • Birgitte JH

    Nice clothes, but I kind of wanna say "the book is better than the film"… in this case "…dress). It's quite dramatic to only use black, I presume because black reminds one of shadows… but shadows is in between light and no light, whilst these clothes are sort of nuances of black by playing with different fabrics and layers. I like many of these clothes independently, but loving the book, I wish this project would have had a little different result.

  • Margot Dirks

    The entire collection is utterly incredible and so beautifully thought out and those patterns are intense. Really amazing. I think the designer was inspired by the book, but also in the opacity and transparencies of fabric. I disagree with Birgitte.