Monday, March 9, 2009

paris autumn/winter 2009 - junya watanabe

count of junya watanabe to take one of the most banal things in fashion and turn it into an intellectual exercise one just how desensitized westerners are to clothes they've been accustomed to all their life. this season, watanabe's object of affection was the down filled jacket. true to form, he took the idea of a puffa and deconstructed it in a way that it became dresses, cocoonish capes, scalloped skirts, or even a ruffled trench. all done in black that gave it a slickness like spilled oil. his ability to re-interpret garments that we have long lost affinity for because of its ordinary-ness and forces us to re-examine on how we can so easily disregard certain things is enough to make you feel guilty of taking those things for granted. but that is what makes watanabe so special. to make something sublime out of something so utilitarian as a down filled jacket justifies his immensely original talent and vision. and to do all that and still retain the spirit and original purpose of a down jacket gives his work a ground on reality. not only did those clothes look like exalted winter coats, they actually looked and i'm positive functioned the part. its no question that everything in fashion is done and really everything that can be done, has already been. the only thing we can do now is to reinterpret the past. and especially this season when the reality is that many designers aren't interpreting the past but basically plagiarizing it, watanabe is a reminder that while the past is a brilliant source of inspiration, as with all things it isn't perfect, therefore it can be made better. and he proved that again this season with resounding success.


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