The Japanese designer creates clothes capable of melting away in a moment
Jane Birkin's purr and the post-apocalyptic army uniforms, wedding gowns and sheer cassocks on Yohji Yamamoto's catwalk initially seemed like an incongruous combination. But, it is Paris; and both icons ably represent Paris's rare and admirable ability to be wise, mature, sexy and cool. Their similarities grew more evident as her era-defining songs from the 60s and 70s played, between jolts of industrial and classical music, throughout Yamamoto's show. The casual, indifferent drapery of his garments was similarly sexy to Birkin's flawed and character-driven beauty. Birkin's looks have evolved with age, because she rejects excessive grooming and surgical tweaks, she exudes confidence and true character. The same qualities describe Yamamoto's clothes, which fit like sheets of seaweed washed on models' bodies. The distressed red, khaki, white and black garments in his current collection floated and fell without attention to conventional rules of cutting or styling. And, ultimately, both Birkin's voice and Yamamoto's clothes convey a pure sense of casual, joyful, uncomplicated sex. Instead of complicated garments that need to be laced and unlaced; peeled and unbuttoned, Yamamoto's clothes seem capable of melting away in a moment.