September 24, 2014 7:45 PM


  Who believes that Samurai still exists in Japan nowadays? A man with high aspirations and adhere unwaveringly to his principles. The forerunners of the Samurai were men who served the nobility as guards, roughly a thousand year ago in Japan. NORITAKA TATEHANA is like a Samurai without either an armor or sword. The samurai values continue to be the soul of him. NORITAKA TATEHANA is a shoe designer based in Tokyo. LADY GAGA is attracted to his typical collection “heelless shoes”, his fame worldwide after LADY GAGA wore his shoes. “Everything is timing.” He said. “Nobody can plot to be famous. It was chemistry that LADY GAGA and I worked together at the time.” He graduated in TOKYO UNIVERSTIY OF ARTS, he sent an email to LADY GAGA’s stylist directly, NICOLA FORMICHETTI, to show his art project which was done in place of a graduation thesis at the university. The stylist asked him to make shoes for LADY GAGA shortly, because the time was just before she would visit Japan. After that, he made several shoes for LADY GAGA and spread his name “NORITAKA TATEHANA” to all over the world. His shoes have been stored up in lots of museums and many celebrities ask him to make shoes for themselves. A pair of shoes is custommade about $20,000 right now.

Not many people can get such an expensive pair of shoes, but some people visit Japan only the purpose to get his shoes. As you imagine, he is able to earn even more money that making popular shoes with a low price than only custommade. In fact, a lot of people suggested making for general, but he kept refusing. “It is a part of Japanese culture.” He explained. “I could not help but wonder, how people discriminate the good from the bad. There are a lot of good shoe designers, “good” does not mean popular in this case. I would like to settle worth each my work and covey to many people. What I want is originating force to get people known Japanese culture and tradition.”

Getting started being interested in making shoes and clothes since he was 15 years old. He studied Japanese pictures, sculptures, dying and waving in the university. Especially he focusing on making Kimono and Geta with Yuzendying. Yuzendyed fabrics are traditional craft in Kyoto and technique devised by painter YUZENSAI MIYAZAKI in Edo period. “Heelless shoe” is designed by mixed modern shoes and Geta, is Japanese courtesans used to wear a thousand year ago. “Each industrial art object has story. We can see Japanese culture and generation through the industrial art object.” Although it should not change dramatically with the times in principle, it is undeniable that some of them may undergo a change with the times. Things are called industrial art objects would be daily necessities in the past. Craftsmen are getting decrease with the time. And even if they work well, they need to make mass production such as souvenir. He feels apprehensive for the Japanese noble. “We can not beyond people in the past, because objects and craftsmen were demanded at the generation and people attempted to improve for their life, but these are not necessary in this generation. What we need is not only leaving their skill and our culture to posterity, but also to cherish the ties of history, evolved into a new style of contemporary.” That is the reason why his art is highly regarded worldwide. His works show Japanese genealogy and represent the forefront of the Japanese genealogy, as like a thing condenses genealogy and express it momentary. “We need to gather to get bigger originating force as a school in old Japanese pictures.”

Unfortunately not many Japanese people try to leave Japanese culture for the future, they tend to focus on others globally. However, it is never striking without basis. “My works have been exhibited in other countries more than in Japan. This is a good opportunity to show Japanese culture for Japanese people and what our identity is.” Now his works are exhibited in Tokyo at 21_21 DESIGN SIGHT. From September 10th, at SHOW STUDIO in London and BROOKLYN MUSEUM in New York will exhibit his work. “Not have to share everything, but I would like to convey to many people.” Now he is such a worldfamous shoe designer, but never be arrogant, is very modesty and down to earth. Just like Samurai would guard their master, he is attempting making his works loyally and spiritedly. You can feel his personality and passion through his works, which are avantgarde and faithfully following the basis. People believe he marks a new chapter in the history. The new chapter is still right in the middle of new history. We bet he will show us new future traditions from now on.





related posts


Dara Senders, the designer behind the eponymously titled, all size inclusive brand that launched in 2018, has always been obsessed with fashion.

January 28, 2020 11:50 AM  |  People


From a small city near Milan to Downtown New York, Paolo, Designer and creater of NTTE Hatsdiscovered his passion for hats and anything vintage at a young age.

November 19, 2019 6:29 PM  |  People


1. As a new designer, how do you hope to distinguish yourself among other designers?

November 19, 2019 6:05 PM  |  People


Nian Fish, creative director of KCD, has been, for decades, a pivotal figure in the fashion world, assembling and producing fashion shows that have become cultural benchmarks unto themselves, such...

September 17, 2019 6:45 PM  |  People


Cesar Love Alexadre is a duo of visual artists formed by Isabelle Chaput and Nelson Tiberghien.They met at the Gobelins school of Photography in Paris and now based in New York where they work on...

September 17, 2019 6:42 PM  |  People


TWELV got a special interview from Tom Pecheux. Read as we host interviews and explore the lives of artists who shape the final product - directors, fashion designers, stylists, ...

August 20, 2019 3:17 PM  |  People


Anthony Vaccarello was considered as one of the brightest new talent in fashion: he was part of this new generation of talents the whole industry has kept an eye on to see them grow, to see them...

July 24, 2019 12:03 AM  |  People

Why is Everyone in Hollywood Buzzing About Actress Malgosia Garnys?

Have you ever felt like you were beautiful and powerful and the universe was conspiring in your best interest, and your opportunities were endless because you’ve lost people you loved...

March 02, 2019 10:00 PM  |  People

R.I.P Chek Wu

We at TWELV are deeply saddened to announce the passing of talented photographer, boundless free-spirit, and our friend, Chek Wu.

November 28, 2018 12:00 PM  |  People

GatherNYC: Everything We Love About Church With No Weird Stuff

GatherNYC is Everything We Love About Sunday Service With None of the Weird Stuff


November 17, 2018 3:00 PM  |  People

NEW TYPE #33: Catherine Casias Inteview

If fashion is an expression of experiences, Catherine Casias has a lot of area to cover. She has excelled as an Olympic volleyball player, a philosophy major, and a fine artist....

October 12, 2018 4:00 PM  |  People

Party Czar Carmen D’Alessio, Empress of the Sun and the Queen of the Night

You may not know Carmen D’Alessio by name.

October 08, 2018 10:00 PM  |  People
Shot by CHAMA


IKEMEN (ē´k´mɛn): Japanese Slang


August 28, 2018 5:00 PM  |  People


IKEMEN (ē´k´mɛn): Japanese Slang


August 07, 2018 5:00 PM  |  People


"Introducing an innovative Men’s designer to inspire you with the visions of future and the rise of technology."

June 26, 2018 4:00 PM  |  People
Silvia Mella (right) with Thomas De Bruyne for "House of Molteni"

Branding in the Worlds of Art and Commerce According to Silvia Mella

Branding is everything. For an entrepreneur, it is the difference between viability and bankruptcy. On social media, we are all our own brands.

May 21, 2018 4:00 PM  |  People
Jackie Yang, Creative Director of Chelsea and Walker. Video Still.

Interview: Jackie Yang, Creative Director of Chelsea and Walker

TWELV sat down with Jackie Yang, Creative Director of Chelsea and Walker, in the brand’s New York City...

May 21, 2018 2:00 PM  |  People
Krystal and Marilyn Lavoie

New Type #31: Angela Mitchell – Krystal and Marilyn Lavoie Interview

We are living in the age of fast fashion, and even Europe’s most storied luxury brands have been moving their factories to Asia to reduce costs.

May 17, 2018 3:00 PM  |  People

Ikemen #37: Dominik Halas

IKEMEN (ē´k´mɛn): Japanese Slang


May 03, 2018 12:00 PM  |  People
Bianca Allen, Carolina Sarria, and Samantha Deller

New Type #30: Carolina Sarria & Bianca Allen Interview

Both Carolina Sarria and Bianca Allen knew they wanted to become fashion designers from a young age.

April 16, 2018 5:00 PM  |  People

Interview & Backstage: Christian Siriano Celebrates 10 Years in Fashion

After the successful launch of his book Dresses to Dream About, a decade-anniversary celebration on the runway, and a whirlwind of striking celebrity looks on the red carpet of...

March 09, 2018 11:00 AM  |  People
Jackie Astier. Photo: BFA.

New Type #29: Jackie Astier Interview

Astier places its identity within the advanced adaptation skills of the modern New York woman.

February 24, 2018 11:00 AM  |  People

INTERVIEW: Meet Kiko Arai, Miss Japan-turned Face of Balmain and Zara

Kiko Arai hails from Osaka, Japan, and after winning the title of Miss Japan 2012, the now 27-year old is captivating a new audience– the fashion world.

February 06, 2018 12:11 AM  |  People

Interview: Parisian Designer Frédéric Robert's Debut Shoe Collection "ME.LAND"

A vibrant brand of Italian-made shoes for men is emerging this year as one-to-watch.

January 26, 2018 10:00 AM  |  People
Maxime Tiliouine and Quentin Hernandez

New Type #28: the Design Duo Behind Maxime Hernandez Interview

The streetwear phenomenon in the fashion establishment is not slowing down anytime soon.

January 12, 2018 2:00 PM  |  People


With a wealth of experience shooting some for some of fashion's most renowned clients (Yves Saint Laurent, Guy Laroche), ...

December 29, 2017 2:00 PM  |  People

IKEMEN #36: Jérôme LaMaar

IKEMEN (ē´k´mɛn): Japanese Slang


November 27, 2017 12:00 PM  |  People
Alcone Backstage Set Designed by Roger Padilha. Photo: Santiago Felipe.

Alcone 65th Anniversary @Capitale: Interview with CEO Maria Stewart

No make-up company has a more storied history firmly ensconced in New York showbiz.

November 13, 2017 4:00 PM  |  People

Ikemen #35: Zaher Saleh

IKEMEN (ē´k´mɛn): Japanese Slang


October 31, 2017 5:00 PM  |  People
Keith Kattner

Interview: Neurosurgeon-turned-Artist Keith Kattner on the Surgery of Classical Painting

Dr. Keith Kattner does not have the typical background one would expect of a successful neurosurgeon.

October 25, 2017 4:00 PM  |  People

New Type #27: Nika Tang Interview

San Fransisco-based designer Nika Tang has emerged as boldly committed to her ideology as to her pieces. Her namesake brand centers...

October 06, 2017 11:00 AM  |  People



October 04, 2017 4:00 PM  |  People

Interview: Becky Donnelly's Fashion Creatures

Quirky girl from Dublin with a penchant for drawing fantasy creatures relocates to London after art school.

October 02, 2017 12:00 PM  |  People

New Type #26: Herman – Raif Adelberg Interview


September 29, 2017 11:00 AM  |  People
Brooke Candy & Kaimin. Photo: Mark Hunter

Kaimin Interview & S/S18 "Slut from the Future" Presentation @ the Top of the Standard

Pulsing with a heavy beat and hazy with a deep rouge glow, the Top of the Standard is as glamorous a place to be as ever. And tonight it is packed with partygoers.

September 28, 2017 10:00 AM  |  People


SITE BY: monocomplex©Marbles & Marbles International Inc. Drupal Development by: DivDiv, NYC
▲ back to top ▲