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Asia Beauty Expo: Peter Gray

The acclaimed hair stylist brings his sculptural hair show to Tokyo with the help of Nicola Formichetti and Dazed menswear editor Robbie Spencer, among others

Peter Gray has applied his artistic touches to multiple editorials with photographers such as Miles Aldridge, Sølve Sundsbø or Migule Reverigo. While directing the hair catwalk looks for the likes of Vivienne Westwood, Hermes and Maison Martin Margiela, the world-renowned hair stylist has also forged a niche for himself directing music videos and – over the last two years - staging elaborate hair shows in Japan.

Showcased as part of Asia Beauty Expo, Peter Gray x Masa Honda Hair show was yet another collaboration between Gray and his former assistant Honda. Aside from inviting 17 stylists, including Nicola Formichetti, Patti Wilson and Robbie Spencer, to cutomize a simple men’s jumpsuit, the show also featured the cream of recent Parsons and Central Saint Martins alumni, including Jackie Lee, Paula Cheng and Thomas Tait. The avant garde women’s and men’s fashion was there to compliment the sculptural and the couture-like; two elements that are key to Gray’s idea of show hair. Dazed brings you this film and exclusive studio shots from the event, plus a chat with the man himself...

Dazed Digital: Can you tell us more about the concept behind the show?
Peter Gray:
The show is a collaboration between me and my ex assistant Masa. Often when you work with people for a long time, they leave you and become your competition. I don’t think that it’s really great for the business. Me and Masa have been working together for about 5 years and, over time, we have developed more of a partnership. I really believe that when people have talent, they shouldn’t be slowed down, but pushed more.

DD: Would you say the shows in Japan allow you a lot more creative freedom?
Peter Gray:
Well, Japan was all about creative freedom. To be honest with you, when I work on editorials, for 90% of the time I feel like I’m dumbing the hair down. The fashion industry is so dominated by advertising and sponsorships that sometimes it’s just refreshing to do something on your own. Luckily, all the stylists and designers involved in this were very excited. My agency is also very supportive of me doing other things.

DD: And how did the idea of stylist-slash-designer come about?
Peter Gray:
I think designers have got so big today that they’re often lacking creativity and need stylists to do their thing. That’s why we came up with the concept of “Customizer as a new designer”. So we asked seventeen different stylists to customize identical jumpsuits and later put them on streetcast models. I think we worked for up to twenty hours for six days before the show…

DD: Finally, what kind of effect did you want to achieve with the hair?
Peter Gray:
We wanted to create real architectural hair, without it being naff, “show” type hair. Something with an editorial quality, but also juxtaposed with good fashion.

Photographer Takahiro Ogawa
Hair Peter Gray x Masa Honda
Makeup Chiho Omae@FrankReps using MAC cosmetics
Manicurist Cotoe
Mask Hirotake Sakai and Chiho Omae
Stylist Yasuhiro Takehisa
Art Director Kazuya Goan

Special thanks to:
Fashion TV Japan
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