Kenzo Takada dies of COVID-19. His impact on fashion will forever be felt.
Paris Fashion Week is a culmination of fashion around the world with the city of Paris being the ultimate purveyor. This season, at the end of the SS21 shows, we lost a fashion legend in Kenzo Takada.
“It is with immense sadness that the brand K-3 announces the loss of its celebrated artistic director, Kenzo Takada. The world-renowned designer passed away on October 4th, 2020 due to Covid-19 related complications at the age of 81 at the American Hospital, in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France.”A statement read.
The Japanese designer living in Paris, France since 1965, has passed away due to COVID-19 complications while in an American hospital in Neuilly-sur-Seine, just outside the city of lights.
Days before, the beekeeper-inspired Spring-Summer 2021 Kenzo collection by artistic director Felipe Oliveira Baptista, graced a socially-distanced Paris runway.
Many shows have altered their presentations to coincide with world health regulations to prevent the spread of the deadly disease.
With a travel-aesthetic that is unmatched, Kenzo pulls ideas and imagery from all over the world. Kenzo manifested his namesake to high-end fashion ranks that began with the opening of his Paris boutique in 1970.
His first collection, having experience as a freelance designer in throughout the city, was called Jungle Jap. A play on words, this collection infused radiant colors and clashing prints derived from Takada’s travel experiences.
Mostly known for an exuberant design, his tailoring was much to note as well. His style of enlarged armholes and sleeves was a nod to his Japanese heritage. He also went away with zippers while creating structure-less garments.
The Kenzo brand would eventually reach a point of success to which the Takada could not operate his vision on his own.
In 1993, the famed LVMH luxury goods company acquired the Kenzo brand and solidified its stature in the fashion industry. And in 1999, Takada went on to pursue a career in art as well as furniture and lifestyle design.
Kenzo has since collaborated with well-known modern brands like H&M, New Era, and recently, Vans.
In the past few years, at its pique of these Kenzo collaborations was with Opening Ceremony founders Carol Lim and Humberto Leon. They also sell Kenzo at their boutique store.
Recognized for his artistic contribution and clashing designs, Kenzo Takada is another reminder of the fragile state we are in as humans.
As we watch the world go back into lockdown, precautions have been implemented vigorously to ensure safety as the fashion world pushes through.