Visit Kenzo´s Press Office
A VISIT AT KENZO’S PRESS OFFICE
Today I visited Kenzo’s press office in Paris, in order to show you the lastest winter collection 2009/10. It also turned out to be an unforgettable meeting with the traveller and the Russian girl’s unfulfilled love destiny, that had inspired Kenzo this time.
By Agent Luxe
The well known haute couture designer Kenzo Takada has been well schooled in Japan, at the famous fashion-school: Bunka. Also Yohji Yamamoto studied there. At Bunka they learned how to use a technique where the pattern is being drawn on a paper at first, and then transferred to the clothes afterwards. This technique has also been used to make the traditional Japanese kimonos that you´ve probably already seen.
The two brand; Kenzo and Yohji Yamamoto managed to grow rapidly ever since. A reason for their successful growth can be that they managed to blend the traditional Eastern art with a Western top-down look, and thereby contributed to a major inspiration for the rest of the world. (Http://www.japaninc.com/mgz_mar-apr_2008_western-fashion)
I went to the Kenzo Press Office in Paris, in order to see the collection…and to give you some inspiration.
The Kenzo winter-collection has been inspired by the traveller and Russia. By mixing colors, styles, and religious traditions, he has created a powerful collection, appealing to the daring and brave souls.
Below you see his inspiration-board; a collage of photos that has inspired him to create this collection, and helped him stay focused on what the wanted the collection to be express. (You can also make one yourself, in order to keep reminding yourself of what you wish for in the future, and what your goals are…it´s an extraordinary way to stay on track!)
This collection had a direct link to nature, in the form of: earth tones, berry-colors and the warm shades of autumn. Each peace was glowing of strong colors like; burgundy, mustard color, and intense ocean blue. I couldn´t be any more ready for the winter to come!
The shoes were plateau, or boots with long shafts that allowed you to zip off the top.
Some of the used fabric materials were knits, fleece and cotton patterns. In addition, silk dresses with colored stripes. In was a mixture of style, culture, and colors; everything from prints of blue and purple to checkered jackets. The most exciting part was that the mixture of fabric was composed on the same piece of clothing, which only gave it an even more special twist.
Inspiration found in a poem
In the press-release it said, that Kenzo had found the inspiration in a poem called: “les gars” by Marina Cvetaeva – A poem telling the story about a young woman in love, who would rather lose all of her closest, than declaring her love for the one she really loved. I could very well imagine what it must have been like, and it was obvious that the mixture of colors and patterns displayed in the collection, must have been an interpretation and expression of that woman’s mixed feelings.
Kenzo had also dwelled with the idea of a Russian artist going through the streets of Paris, from the Victory Square to the Louvre. Standing there, in the front of the collection, I was there…next to the Russian girl… which feelings were so ambivalent that only a mixed pattern and some sharp warm colors would be able to express that.
I wondered; is everything we wear representing our daily mood? Can other people get a glimpse of our state of mind, just by taking a look at our clothes, or do they need to know more about our background story? I might have got the Russian atmosphere without knowing the story that inspired to this collection, but for sure that adding the story made the Russian girl come to life, I could almost feel what kind of a mood she must have been in.
I find it absolutely fascinating, when an artist/designer is able to pull you out of your time and place, and give you a moment of transcendent experience when you are there; at the exact place that the designer had intended you to be. To me, that´s what make haute couture an art. Like looking at a beautiful painting that by looking at it will absorb your thoughts for a while and lead your imagination on to somewhere else!
Kenzo as an artist
That changed my regard of Kenzo as a designer, to Kenzo – an artist!
And in reality, isn´t that what all great designers are; artists? So when we buy a piece of their haute couture clothes, we don’t just buy the right to say we are fashionable, we also buy a piece of art. A piece of clothes that starts out representing a story or an idea that the designer had – an idea that you might understand by observing it…but then, when it´s being worn afterwards, it will be given this extra dimension of a new and more present story that the person wearing it chooses; fx by the way they wear it, the mood they surround it by, and the context they make it a part of…
To me the final art, is not just having created the clothes, or having presented it on the catwalk, to show the intended atmosphere… to me It lies in the extra unpredictable dimension it is given afterwards when it´s being presented by the person who chose it, who bought it, because somehow it was appealing to her…and finally giving the surrounding people an opportunity to interpreter it, in their own way. Perhaps they will get inspired by the original story/idea hidden in the clothes, sewed into it, or perhaps they will get inspired by the way it´s worn! To me that´s what art is for; to inspire and fascinate us, in whatever way it might be…and the more the merrier!
There is no doubt that the Russian theme was the focal point of this contrasted winter collection. The contrasts between the military field, the soft embroidery and luxury accessories, creating a unique style.