Skip to main content

To help keep our visitors and staff safe, please book your spot before visiting.

Menu

The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

The Gallery’s Acknowledgement of Country, and information on culturally sensitive and restricted content and the use of historic language in the collection can be found here.

Akira Isogawa

2001
Peter Brew-Bevan

type C photograph on paper (sheet: 50.6 cm x 40.9 cm, image: 48.9 cm x 38.8 cm)

Akira Isogawa (b. 1964), fashion designer, was born in Kyoto, Japan, and first came to Australia on a working holiday at the age of 21. After studying fashion design at East Sydney TAFE, in 1993 he opened the Akira Isogawa boutique in Woollahra, and swiftly established a reputation for his bold and intelligent clothes. At Sydney's Australian Fashion Week in 1996, he sent all his models out wearing red socks because he couldn't afford shoes for them; but he has shown at most Australian Fashion Weeks since, and since 1998 he has shown twice annually in Paris. The National Gallery of Victoria's Akira Isogawa: Printemps Eté in 2004–2005 was the first solo exhibition of an Australian designer's work to be shown at a major art institution and later toured to Singapore, Manila, Bangkok, New Delhi and Mumbai. A regular collaborator with choreographer Graeme Murphy, he designed costumes for The Australian Ballet's Romeo and Juliet and Murphy, and for four Sydney Dance Company productions. Sydney's Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences showed the retrospective Akira Isogawa in 2018–2019 and his work was included in the Victoria and Albert Museum's 2020 exhibition Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk in London.

Peter Brew-Bevan photographed Isogawa half-hidden among the cardboard templates used to create the patterns for his exquisitely detailed garments, with one of his own labels adhering to his hand.

Gift of the artist 2005
© Peter Brew-Bevan

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. Works of art from the collection are reproduced as per the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). The use of images of works from the collection may be restricted under the Act. Requests for a reproduction of a work of art can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

Artist and subject

Peter Brew-Bevan (age 32 in 2001)

Akira Isogawa (age 37 in 2001)

Subject professions

Architecture, design and fashion

Donated by

Peter Brew-Bevan (6 portraits)

Related information

The Companion

Permanent collection catalogue

Café and shop

On one level The Companion talks about the most famous and frontline Australians, but on another it tells us about ourselves: who we read, who we watch, who we listen to, who we cheer for, who we aspire to be, and who we'll never forget. The Companion is available to buy online and in the Portrait Gallery Store.

Akira Isogawa

Inside the patterns

Portrait story

Iconic Australian fashion designer, Akira Isogawa discusses the development of his unique style.

Portrait of Professor Graeme Clark
Portrait of Professor Graeme Clark
Portrait of Professor Graeme Clark
Portrait of Professor Graeme Clark

Portraits for Posterity

Previous exhibition, 2006

Drawn from some of the many donations made to the Gallery's collection, the exhibition Portraits for Posterity pays homage both to the remarkable (and varied) group of Australians who are portrayed in the portraits and the generosity of the many donors who have presented them to the Gallery.

© National Portrait Gallery 2021
King Edward Terrace, Parkes
Canberra, ACT 2600, Australia

Phone +61 2 6102 7000
Fax +61 2 6102 7001
ABN: 54 74 277 1196

The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders past and present. We respectfully advise that this site includes works by, images of, names of, voices of and references to deceased people.

This website comprises and contains copyrighted materials and works. Copyright in all materials and/or works comprising or contained within this website remains with the National Portrait Gallery and other copyright owners as specified.

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. The use of images of works of art reproduced on this website and all other content may be restricted under the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). Requests for a reproduction of a work of art or other content can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency