I have so much love and respect for several designers coming out of Japan. Their voice is often strong, creative, and true to themselves. Their work is very complex and amazingly well made. I got my fist Comme Des Garcons dress in Tokyo when I was a teenager. I still can’t quite figure out how she constructed it. Rei Kawakubo’s work really made a big impression on me as a young person as well. She is definitely another influential force in my own work.
Full of confident is Rei Kawakubo. The recession cannot force her to sacrifice the integrity of her ideas. Her singular vision, the one responsible for forever changing the face and idea of what fashion is remains unnerved. Kawakubo is one of the rare ones that continued to forge ahead and take fashion and the meaning of it beyond its suffocating box.
Fashion is, and has always been the vehicle in which Kawakubo mediates her intellectual dialogue with the public. She rarely speaks to the press and notoriously reclusive with any media. Her work is her speech. This season was perhaps the most provocative collection throughout the fashion calendar.
Its poignancy is in its elusive metaphors. There has been this combative atmosphere throughout the collections. An aggressiveness that is so defiant that it almost defeminizes the clothes. “Wonderland,” Kawakubo called it afterward, “where nothing is as it seems.” Here kawakubo wrapped all the aggressiveness of military uniforms in tulle. It reminds us that just because women need to be strong in the real world, especially now. It doesn’t mean that they have to sacrifice their femininity. With everyone talking about how creativity is fostered during these troubling times, Kawakubo is one of the very rare few to actually live up to it.