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INSPIRING ESBY // rei kawakubo of comme des garcons: art of the in-between

Posted on July 22 2017

“rei kawakubo/comme des garcons: art of the in-between”


our team is constantly seeking inspiration and exploring the evolution of modern fashion. on may 1, the metropolitan museum of arts in new york city hosted their 2017 met gala, inviting celebrities and fashion influencers to get a first look at the costume institute’s annual fashion exhibition. during our esby swim tour, we decided to stop by the metropolitan museum of arts to peruse through this year’s tokyo-based designer rei kawakubo of comme des garcons' exhibit “art of the in-between”.





the maze-like display of the collection presented recent and early work by kawakubo dating back as early as the 1980s and allowed us to have an understanding of the progressive nature of her work as we wandered from room to room. her creative taste in using an array of textiles to design her pieces solidifies her style of challenging conventional fashion norms. we were thoroughly impressed by her use of color, shape, space and overall diverse aesthetic.





the exhibit examines expressions of the “in-between” in kawakubo’s collection through nine contrasting themes:

absence/presence
design/not design
fashion/antifashion
model/multiple
high/low
then/now
self/other
object/subject
clothes/not clothes

    it is exceptionally evident that kawakubo’s entire design journey is greatly influenced by her life experiences, philosophies and cultural influences. One of our favorite pieces stemmed from her spring/summer 2014 not making clothing collection under the theme of clothes/not clothes. The display expands on the concept of form and function with abstract shapes and exaggerated proportions on clothing that challenge the human figure.




    kawakubo’s innovative mind and artistic execution throughout her exhibition inspire us to design clothing at esby in a manner that transcends the ages. from the first sketch to the final product, we anticipate for each piece to be as fashionable as it is timeless and inspiring. be on the lookout for esby’s pre-fall collection in store and coming online soon!

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