I’VE LIVED THE CONVENTIONAL LIFE, AND NOW IT’S TIME FOR ME TO EXPRESS MY INNER SELF. I DON’T CARE IF I DON’T SELL ANYTHING. I CAN BE POOR.
“you have to shut up and work, and work, and work all the time and produce, and produce, and produce. and the more you produce your character, or your talent, will emerge. for better or for worse your identity, your personality, your vision, whatever. as long as you work, and work, and work and make enough things to choose from you’ll be able to have an edit, you’ll be able to edit something that becomes who you are. it’s so simple. i mean you don’t have to like go to parties, you don’t have to meet the right people. you just have to like work, and work, and work, and get your stuff out there. you have to go out there and you have to show it to people. you can’t expect people to come knocking on your door, you have to show it. but you know kissing somebody’s ass isn’t going to really help that much. unless it’s good. your main thing is just to get your work out there, and to get a lot of it done, so you can pick the very best.”
taken from dazed & confused issue 16, 1995.
paul smith interview with rei kawakubo:
PS: do you enjoy married life?
RK: i enjoy my life.
PS: do you have any children?
RK: yes, 425. they all work at comme des garçons.
PS: what car do you drive?
RK: a big old japanese car.
the glamour issue may 1992 rei kawakubo:
“GLAMOUR IS SURFACE LEVEL AND NOT AN INDICATOR OF WHO YOU REALLY ARE.”
interview magazine: by ronnie cooke newhouse
RCN: how do you balance art and commerce and still remain free.
RK: feeling free inside oneself is being free.
RCN: is there something hopelessly bourgeois about being an artist? do you escape that by making something utilitarian, even if it is described as art?
RK: it is not in order to escape. there is surely worth in making simple things, and there is worth when utility is the concept. but art need not be bourgeois, necessarily. there is nothing bourgeois, for example, about hair artist julien d’Ys great creation for this collection, where hair, hat, and makeup become one.
RCN: fashion has become a big business, dominated by large corporate enterprises, like LVMH and the gucci group. you collaborate with this world, as you recently did with louis vuitton, but you also hold yourself completely apart from it. what is your attitude toward the dominance of fashion by these corporate entities?
RK: there’s no deep meaning. it’s just business. but even with business methods and ideas, it is necessary to have something new.
RCN: you don’t seem to want to be defined or aligned. how would you define yourself?
RK: i don’t think of myself as anyone special, and i would not know how to define myself.
RCN: an artist friend defined the difference between art and fashion this way: what an artist makes and sees stays as is; what a designer makes is like two objects—one is what is perceived in a shop and the other is how it looks in the mirror.
RK: is finding a difference so important, really? fashion is not art. the aims of fashion and art are different and there is no need to compare them.
Comme des Garçons X Ai Weiwei, 2010