Japanese fashion designer Rei Kawakubo is known not only for her bold and daring avant-garde designs, but also her flawless ability to challenge the conventions of beauty, taste, and fashionability. The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute’s Spring 2017 exhibition will examine and showcase her work, with the thematic show featuring around an incredible 150 examples of Kawakubo’s womenswear for her fashion label Comme des Garçons dating from the early 80s to her most recent collection.
“In blurring the art/fashion divide, Kawakubo asks us to think differently about clothing,” said Director of The Met, Thomas Campbell. “Curator Andrew Bolton will explore work that often looks like sculpture in an exhibition that will challenge our ideas about fashion’s role in contemporary culture.”
From early May until September, the galleries will be illustrating her revolutionary experiments of “in-betweenness” – the space between boundaries. Objects will be organised into eight aesthetic expressions of interstitiality in the designer’s work: Fashion/Anti-Fashion, Design/Not Design, Model/Multiple, Then/Now, High/Low, Self/Other, Object/Subject, and Clothes/Not Clothes. Rei Kawabuko breaks down the walls between these dualisms, exposing their vulnerable artificiality and arbitrariness. This exhibition will also be The Costume Institute’s first monographic show on a living designer since the 1983 Yves Saint Laurent exhibition.
Andrew Bolton, the Curator in charge of The Costume Institute called Rei Kawakubo “one of the most important and influential designers of the past 40 years by inviting us to rethink fashion as a site of constant creation, recreation, and hybridity, she has defined the aesthetics of our time.”
“I have always pursued a new way of thinking about design,” said Rei Kawakubo regarding her work. “By denying established values, conventions, and what is generally accepted as the norm. And the modes of expression that have always been most important to me are fusion, imbalance, unfinished, elimination, and absence of intent.”
The Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between exhibition will run from 4th of May until the 4th of September 2017 at The Met Fifth Avenue.
Photos from Google.