At last. After four months, I finally managed to see the V&A’s exhibition on Yohji Yamamoto two days ago – today was the last day. If you missed it, don’t fret – I’ve been to other designer retrospective exhibitions before and I wouldn’t say this particular one was amazing. But it was definitely a pretty good insight into his vision and work throughout the years. It felt like a good lesson in fashion history class because in all honesty, and as you can see from this blog, I’m just not into, how can I put this, edgy stuff – I’m more of a hearts and bows kind of girl. Yep, my style is far from avant-garde – the closest I’ve come to edginess are a few non-groundbreaking Comme des Garçons pieces from sample sales, so unsurprisingly I knew very little about Yohji up until Friday. And, even though I probably wouldn’t wear most of his clothes, it’s still easy to admire his passion and dedication – the man loves what he does and that comes across instantly. Plus, humour is one of the key elements in his work, and in my eyes that’s a big bonus.
I took pictures of a few bits and pieces from the exhibition – photography wasn’t allowed in the main room, but that wasn’t the case with the few garments on display in different sections of the museum (which were a bit of a mission to find, I didn’t realise the V&A was such a maze). Here are the details that caught my attention, as well as some really interesting quotes from the man himself included in the exhibition…
“When I started a men’s line in Paris, my message was very simple: let’s be outside of this. Let’s be far from our suits and ties. Let’s be far from business men. Let’s be vagabonds.”
“I wanted people to wear my clothes for at least ten years, so I asked the fabric maker to make a very strong, tough finish. It’s very close to designing army clothing.”
“For me, a woman who is absorbed in her work, who does not care about gaining one’s favour, strong yet subtle at the same time, is essentially more seductive. The more she hides and abandons her femininity, the more it emerges from the very heart of her existence.”