Curtain Master




Akane Moriyama,  a Stockholm based designer who merges textiles with architecture, did this immense curtain for Hirakata T-SITE bookstore in Osaka, Japan. Moriyama has been creating textiles for architectural projects since 2009.  She studied at Kyoto University and then moved to Sweden to study textile design at Konstfack Collage of Arts and Crafts. There she became more experiential and her fascination with the colors in the sky and how they change during the day led her to curtains.  Her designs routinely use window treatments to create unique spatial arrangements, and to incorporate and blur the boundary between architecture/ structure and interiors/ exteriors. 

Transparent materials are prevalent in her designs. Overlapping colors interiors make endless combinations of colors possible and the transparency changes the light in the space. It’s Akane’s intention actually to color the spaces she works in (think: wearing transition lenses while in an interior space), and transparent materials are best to achieve that. Using layers actually increases the light activity letting one piece give you different colors. What is also good about textiles for architecture is that it can easily be changed. It’s flexibility  enables her to add new qualities to a space. 



In this project, located in a commercial complex near Osaka, japan, the Hirakata T-SITE bookstore had set of gigantic façade windows that Moriyama adorned with twenty-six foot high curtains. Akane wanted to use the curtains to act as a shield from late afternoon sun as well as create movement on the façade. They elegantly cover the large windows when sunlight is intense, and are rolled up into a spiral rail track at evening time. 



She used three different layers of semi-transparent textiles: semi-transparent grey organza with silver prints reflects light on the façade, a off white semi opaque solid and a semi-transparent yellow organza on the interior side that shows shadows casted from the outer layers. These different fabrics offer different expressions between inside and out — bringing a feeling of complexity and volume. The curtains are always in flux with tiny variants in color, texture, movement happening throughout the day much like the sky she is so captivated by.


To fabricate, Moriyama first screen printed perforated circles on the grey organza with silver ink; then the layers were seamed together into one panel. Finally, the curtain panel was pleated.  The curtains hang from a motorized spiral rail track that essentially rolls up the panel when not needed.




Result:  Genius! not to mention a fabulous fabrication and monumental installation.

Check out the video showcasing the process.


Curtain for Hirakata T-SITE from AMS on Vimeo.

Being a window fashionista I couldn’t stop there- I had to see what other innovative installations she had done. 

So in case you missed it-

Draped Flowers for a cafe in Sweden where the 100% linen knitted curtain has pockets that act as holders for vials of fresh flowers. The combination of fresh flowers and flexible textiles becomes ever-changing vertical divider in the space, which alters its appearance, scent and texture all the time. People choose their favorite flowers to put on this drapery, which becomes an element of the space. Its landscape depends on the seasons, locations and the creator, while its scent, color and transparency change.


drapedflowers_013 drapedflowers_009  drapedflowers_012

Or this – O House a functioning reefed (Italian strung) curtain – ’nuff said! 


Materials: 100% Cotton, Kevlar rope(4mm diameter), Acrylic tubes and Steel rings for a curtain that is 485 square feet; 23.5 feet tall and 6.5 feet wide. 

images via Designboom and Akane Moriyama

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