Thursday, 4 July 2013

Inspiration - Kansai Yamamoto


Kansai Yamamoto

Designer to to Legend that is David Bowie, Kansai Yamamoto was a major element in creating the image of Ziggy Stardust. He showed his first collection in London in 1971 and was highlighted for his avant-garde kimono designs and is widely known as the man who re-invented the kimono. It was this unique talent and creativity that produced the famous image of Ziggy stardust.

David Bowie and Kansai Yamamoto met in New York and Kansai orgianally gave two of his kimono designs to Bowie as a gift. Next, he was commisioned to create nine more costumes for the tour.

My pencil sketchs of some of Bowie's outfits.

"He has an unusual face, don't you think?  He's neither man nor woman.  If you see what I mean; which suited me as a designer because most of my clothes are for either sex.  I love his music and obviously that has influenced my designs but most of all there's this aura of fantasy that surrounds him.   He has flair." - Kansai Yamamoto (June 1973)

Kansai's designs helped to maintain the mystery of Ziggy Stardust whilst still maintaining a wow factor which captured the curiousity of the British nation, in one way or another. The Costumes and Bowie, at the time, did not always receive the positive press which it is so famous for today. However the designs of Kansai combined with the music of Bowie did capture the nations attention and became the most exciting thing to happen in Britain since the Beatles.

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