Esteemed Japanese fashion designer Kansai Yamamoto has passed away, as confirmed by an Instagram post from his daughter, Mirai, this morning.
Prior to opening his company in 1971, Yamamoto studied civil engineering and English at Nippon University and subsequently graduated from Bunka College of Fashion — which also counts the likes of Jun Takahashi, Yohji Yamamoto, NIGO and Junya Watanabe as alumni — in 1967.
Kamamoto’s avant-garde collections were renowned within international fashion circles, but his most famous work was arguably his costume designs for David Bowie, for whom he custom-made many of the iconic outfits worn during the musician’s Ziggy Stardust era.
“Some sort of chemical reaction took place: My clothes became part of David, his songs and his music,” Yamamoto said. “They became part of the message he delivered to the world.”
In recent years, Yamamoto’s influence was evident, inspiring a FW20 collection from Rick Owens, and continuing to make stand-out appearances at industry events, including his fire-engine red suit as seen at the Louis Vuitton Resort 2018 Collection in Japan above.