I was in New York over the weekend for an Apparel Designers Network NY meeting and of course made time to see the much anticipated exhibit of Rei Kawakubo's work at the MET. The exhibit entitled "Rei Kawakubo/ Comme des Garcons: Art of In-Between" showcases some of the designer's most powerful and iconic work over the years since the early 80's. The work is not presented in a chronological order, though; instead it is a collective work exploring Kawakubo's overarching Zen perspective of clothing.
The fact that the clothing is not flattering, in fact by most standards it's not even very wearable, is of little concern to her. Instead it is about the wearer's body and the garments, and even the spaces they inhabit, becoming one artistic statement. The overall statement that this exhibit explores is the in-between space she imagines her creations occupy in the social and cultural dichotomies within which clothing is typically categorized. She is questioning cultural norms and classifications of dress and wearer and making a strong statement about freedom of expression, and freedom from restriction.
click through the gallery below to see some highlights form this marvelous show. I urge you to take the time to see it as it is truly thought provoking. The show runs at the MET through September 4th, 2017.
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Sources: all photos by Thea for Polychrome | MET
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