Creative Collaborations

Kawakubo's creativity has extended to many events and collaborations, from museum and gallery exhibitions to performances to collaborations with architects, photographers, graphic designers, and even a floral artist. She has worked with the artists Cindy Sherman and JeanPierre Raynaud, and in 1997 she designed the set and costumes for Merce Cunningham's work Scenario, performed at the Brooklyn Academy of Music and the Palais Carnier in Paris. Kawakubo said that fashion and modern dance are really the same. With a collection presentation, I think about the total concept, the environment, the lighting and the make-up as well as the clothes. And the pressure to create something new and beautiful is similarly the same. Of course, the added dimension is the dancers' movements which was the risk. When I saw the rehearsal for the first time, I was fascinated how the shapes changed and came alive with the movements of the dancers. (Johnson, p. 49)

The designs for Scenario derived from Kawakubo's spring 1997 collection, Body Becomes Dress, Dress Be comes Body, in which she used feather padding to produce bulges under the clothes, an effect that altered the natural silhouette of the body. Kawakubo said, "It is always stimulating to do new things. The goal of my work for 'Scenario' is the same as my goal for everything: to create something strong, and beautiful and new" (Johnson, pp. 48-53).

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