Kenzo, a Fashion culture from elsewhere

The pyjama suit, the jumper with kimonos sleeves or even jeans with flowers pattern, all those creations belong to one famous maison haute couture, that you might have recognized, Kenzo. Like its creator Kenzo is unique in the luxury fashion industry. The brand have preserved since 1970, the soul of his founder.  Kenzo style, with its oriental sources, is recognizable among hundred of others, catching the eye but also the curiosity of the fashion addict. In order to stick to its identity Kenzo must produce advertising campaign that draw the same feelings.

In this article I would like to discuss about the two last campaigns that particularly caught my attention.  Indeed, for its communication the brand chose the art Magazine Toilet Paper (yes it is the real name) to produce a surreal psychedelic campaign for fall/winter 2014 and also spring/summer 2015. Models popping up out of holes in the floor or breaking into the house using the dog door.  Or even people walking on a giant chess. That is the psychedelic scenes that we can see on those two campaigns.

fall/winter 2014

fall/winter 2014

spring/summer 2015

spring/summer 2015

To sum up, they are both fun, esthetic and off the wall. But style we can see some differences between the two. First, by the color tone used in each video. The first one is flashier whereas the second use primarily white, black and blue color. The choice of the music is also relevant from the different atmosphere. In the first video the music tend to highlight the tension and anxiety that emerge from the situation. In the second video, the music sounds more electronic (even robotic) that fit completely into the futurist atmosphere.

The result is very powerful and above all it transmits very well the Kenzo style.  The two campaigns are breaking away from traditional luxury advertising. It doesn’t use the classical and inspirational codes. There is no sense, it is deliberately playing with the absurd, but it is the kenzo signature that is why it works.  Just a funny quote from Paul Farkas, co founder of Accessory 2 to sum up the idea of the collaboration between Kenzo and Toilet Paper “Toilet Paper Mag loves to mashup and Kenzo loves to collab so a collab between the two sets a limitless foundation for unique, adventurous campaigns bending and blending context,” In my opinion, Dior or Chanel would never make such a choice. First of all because it doesn’t correspond to their identity and the values they promote. Secondly, because the message won’t be understood by the consumers. There will be a complete discrepancy between what they are and what they show. Kenzo through its unique creations affirms its own vision of fashion. This vision makes credible those off the wall campaigns that are far from the classical luxury advertising.

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