Fashion in Motion: Kansai Yamamoto

On the occasion of the upcoming Fashion in Motion show of Meadham Kirchhoff at the V&A, I decided to talk about the first Fashion in Motion show I went to.

The Victoria & Albert Museum hosts live fashion shows of various designers to make fashion couture accessible to a wider public against the beautiful backdrop of the museum. The first Fashion in Motion show was held in June 1999 and featured Alexander McQueen. Since then others designers have been featured such as Jean Paul Gaultier, Missoni, Kenzo and others.

For the Kansai Yamamoto show archive pieces were presented from the 40 year career of the Japanese designer known for his avant garde designs and sculptural tailoring.


Kansai said of his Fashion in Motion show: “In Japan the word BASARA means to dress freely, with a stylish extravagance. BASARA is the opposite of the Japanese wabi-sabi aesthetic, which is underplayed and modest; it is colourful and flamboyant and it lies at the heart of my design. I am excited to present this to at the V&A.”

The Kansai Yamamoto show had a strong focus on traditional music, as two men at one end of the room were producing nature-like sounds throughout the catwalk show. The movement of the models was resembling dance moves, they weren’t merely walking; long strides following the rhythm of the music resulting in a magnificent show. The show started with traditional outfits and went on to more modern; a girl with a plastic corset with an embedded iPad on surely has to be the epitome of modern age fashion.



Fitted blazers paired with harem pants and bright colours and leopard print were all mixed together to create a funky, but still traditional show, the combination of which has made Kansai so popular. Recreations of his designs for David Bowie worn on the 1973 Aladdin Sane were also shown.

The Meadham Kirchhoff show is on the 6th of December, tickets are now sold out but the tickets of the people who don’t show up will be given out on a first come first serve basis, so try your luck!

xo Fani


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