Rei Kawakubo. (b. October 11th, 1942) is a Japanese fashion designer based in Tokyo and Paris. Hailed as one of the most brilliant and innovative designers of our time, Rei Kawakubo has consistently defied notions not only of beauty, but also of what fashion can be, at once confounding our expectations for clothing and—like Noguchi—challenging the idea that design and art are inherently different endeavors. Also like Noguchi, Kawakubo celebrates not only forms, but also the spaces between them.
Kawakubo is founder of COMME des GARÇONS and co-founder of Dover Street Market, and her design practice extends beyond clothing to the graphic design, advertising, and interiors for her businesses, which she considers to be inextricable components of her aesthetic vision. Her work has appeared in several exhibitions, including a critically acclaimed solo exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2017, which was only the second monographic show awarded to a living designer by The Met. This year (2019) marks the 50th anniversary of COMME des GARÇONS.
Kawakubo received the Fashion Group International Award in 1986 and the Excellence in Design Award from Harvard University Graduate School of Design in 2000. In 1993 she was named a Chevalier in the Order of Arts and Letters by the French government. She divides her time between Tokyo and Paris.