Kenzo, 1983

Kenzo’s Fall/Winter 1983 campaign shot by Hans Feurer

Strangely, by 1983 the momentum of Kenzo’s celebratory and optimistic fashions gave out. What replaced it was a darker, harder, and tougher demeanor best exemplified by Thierry Mugler and Claude Montana. The two would go on to define the era until the 90’s when they too would find their expressions lost to a anxious audience in search of new experiences.

Kenzo’s vision of a multi-cultural/multi-ethnic world was, in a way, a microcosmic utopia with quite the convincing touch of reality. But it wasn’t the perfect world that was sought in the 80’s despite that photographer Oliviero Toscani seemed to successfully capture the feeling for his clients ESPRIT and Benetton, who in turn sold it to their customers in a much bigger volume. But Kenzo’s general message; to accept others as they are, to embrace our differences, and to enjoy our lives with passion and humor, are not bad aspirations to keep around no matter the mood in fashion, not bad at all.


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