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August 2 2014

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Kansai’s Comeback

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Considering he’s best known for designing David Bowie’s—or, should we say, Ziggy Stardust’s—iconic striped bodysuit for the 1973 Aladdin Sane tour, it seems fitting that Japanese designer Kansai Yamamoto would choose now to make his comeback. Last Friday in Tokyo, WWD reports, Yamamoto, who had seemingly abandoned fashion to “focus on entertainment,” held his first runway show in nearly twenty years. Naturally, it featured a repro of the Bowie suit (the original is currently on display in the V&A’s David Bowie is exhibition, along with a host of other outfits Yamamoto custom-made for the rock star). The designer first launched his range of high-concept, Kabuki-inspired wares in the early 1970s, and became famed for what he referred to as Super Shows. Staged all over the world, including in Moscow’s Red Square, the veritable fash-stravaganzas featured everything from acrobats and dancers to “cape pants” and cartoon-printed clothing. Apparently, Friday’s event wasn’t quite as grand as his previous spectacles (although there were trumpet players and martial artists). Nonetheless, we’re happy to see that Mr. Yamamoto—whose new looks included graffiti-print batwing sweatshirts and drop-crotch comic-strip trousers—is back in action.

Photo: Striped bodysuit for Aladdin Sane tour 1973 by Masayoshi Sukita, © Sukita The David Bowie Archive 2012 via www.vam.ac.uk

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