A Look Back at Rei Kawakubo's Comme des Garcons
Comme des Garcons designer Rei Kawakubo will be honored with the International award at this Monday's CFDA Awards, and already the industry is getting a head start on celebrating.
Earlier this week, Style.com published a tribute in which notable fashionables — including Taylor Tomasi Hill, Shane Gabier, and Chris Peters — discuss their love for the avant-garde label. Then on Wednesday, Cathy Horyn offered her perspective on Kawakubo's 40-plus-year career. "No living designer, with the exception of Azzedine Alaïa, is held in higher esteem by her peers, and none has enriched our spirit in so many original and confounding ways," Horyn wrote. In an attempt to shed light on Kawakubo's creative process, Horyn also reprinted an email from the designer, an excerpt of which is below:
"My design process never starts or finishes. I am always hoping to find something through the mere act of living my daily life. I do not work from a desk, and do not have an exact starting point for any collection. There is never a mood board, I do not go through fabric swatches, I do not sketch, there is no eureka moment, there is no end to the search for something new. As I live my normal life, I hope to find something that click starts a thought, and then something totally unrelated would arise, and then maybe a third unconnected element would come from nowhere. Often in each collection, there are three or so seeds of things that come together accidentally to form what appears to everyone else as a final product, but for me it is never ending. There is never a moment when I think, 'this is working, this is clear.' If for one second I think something is finished, the next thing would be impossible to do."
Kawakubo will not be in New York to accept her award Monday, but she has asked her longtime friend filmmaker John Waters to present and accept the award on her behalf. In the slideshow, a look back at some of our favorite looks from recent Comme des Garcons collections.