Uniqlo is no stranger to collaboration – having done so with JW Anderson and Animal Crossing in the past – and their latest is with none other than Tate Modern. Their new three-year partnership aims to make art accessible to all through a new UNIQLO Tate Play program and new UT (UNIQLO T-shirt) collection based on original designs inspired by Tate.
Uniqlo and Tate first partnered up in 2016 for something called Uniqlo Tate Lates – a series of late-night events that gave the public access to Tate’s latest exhibitions and displays. Attracting a younger crowd, it brought in more than half a million visitors over the four-year period.
The UNIQLO Tate Play program begins on 24 July 2021 and coincides with the 20th anniversary of UNIQLO in the UK, the first market that UNIQLO expanded into outside of Japan. “The renewed collaboration with Tate Modern is based on a shared philosophy of Made for All, a concept reflected in LifeWear, which is clothing designed to help make everyone’s daily life better, and in giving everyone access to the joy of art. I hope many families will participate in the new UNIQLO Tate Play program,” said Tadashi Yanai, Fast Retailing Chairman, President and CEO.
Uniqlo Tate Play will be launched with the start of Tate Modern Festival held by Tate Modern. With many activities free of charge, participants will be guided to play, create and transform the floor of the Turbine Hall in Tate Modern into an artwork: “Uniqlo Tate Play: Mega Please Draw Freely”.
Organized by Japanese artist Ei Arakawa, this activity idea is inspired by the Gutai, the first radical, post-war artistic group in Japan. Throughout the gameplay, it is to encourage everyone in any ages and genders to create freely while sketching out their own experience.
Another activity under Uniqlo Tate Play is “Please Draw Freely Outside”, which is slightly different from the previous activity but shares the same belief. Inspired by Jirō Yoshihara, leader of the Gutai group, artist Ei Arakawa wants to create a space for visitors to explore themselves as well as the arts world with giant trees in nature.
Can’t make it to Tate Modern in person? Not to fret – the UNIQLO x Tate Modern UT collection of t-shirts will hit stores worldwide in 2022.