The iconic unorthodox designer behind the astounding fashion brand Comme des Garçons. Rei Kawakubo persists creativity by establishing garment construction in the most interesting manner, challenging body-shape ideals and glamorous use of color. The radical silhouettes and composition of Kawakubo became revolutionary.
“The more people that are afraid when they see new creation, the happier I am. I think the media has some responsibility to bear for people becoming more conservative. Many parts of the media have created the situation where uninteresting fashion can thrive.”— Rei Kawakubo
1969, Rei Kawakubo opened Comme des Garçons, and in 12 years, her works sprang fame in Paris. It was so unique; her presentation shocked the West Fashion world, as she challenged the current fashion style with a very different style of glamour. Entitled ‘Hiroshima Chic’, this anti-fashion art continues to highlight the phenomenal deconstructed pieces and complete artistic freedom. Her designs have inspired several designers, including Martin Margiela, Helmut Lang, Ann Demeulemeester, and Junya Wanatabe. With great success, she built one of the biggest independent fashion empires.
“Fashion is something that you can attach to yourself, put on, and through that interaction, the meaning of it is born.”— Rei Kawakubo
Kawakubo started opening stores back in 2004, first in London, and then New York, Tokyo, Singapore, Beijing and Los Angeles. She also received awards from the field of design and arts, namely, Mainichi Fashion Grand Prize, 1983; the Fashion Group International award, 1986; Fashion Institute of Technology, 1987; the Excellence in Design Award from the Harvard University Graduate School of Design, 2000; and the Isamu Noguchi Award, 2019.
“If I do something I think is new, it will be misunderstood, but if people like it, I will be disappointed because I haven’t pushed them enough. The more people hate it, maybe the newer it is. Because the fundamental human problem is that people are afraid of change. The place I am always looking for-because in order to keep the business I need to make a little compromise between my values and customers’ values-is the place where I make something that could almost-but not quite-be understood by everyone.”— Rei Kawakubo