Hiro is channeling the late great photographer Diane Arbus in his S/S 2012 in a collection that does not shy away from challenging silhouettes and themes – as you would expect from a designer who themed a collection on Suicide and Terrorism. This time, like the aforementioned Diane Arbus, he presents images that challenge the notion of beauty, subvert expectations and strive for honesty, but with the crucial caveat of consent that does not mark the wearer as a freak in a show, but instead the one in control of the dynamic who challenges the viewer.
What this means in real terms (but I do encourage you to get stuck into the world of Diane Arbus if you are so inclined) is progressive Harajuku street fashion and middle-fingers all round to conservative ideas of beauty and gender. In particular the one area where Hiro stands out amongst his contemporaries, is that like Runurunu and Balmung he works on a scale unprecedented in street fashion with vast items that envelope the wearer and completely alter their form. On that note I should say that by virtue of the new genderless silhouette that Hiro strives for, his work is worn unisex and you will see the same clothes modelled in the the lookbook on the male rails over in Acycle or Cannabis.
With that said, on with the show:
There are always a satisfying amount of unique touches in the work, whether it is a different bit of vintage fabric or patch placed irregularly, it all goes to make an individual collection all the more distinct.
Hiro always talks about making clothes that would not exist unless he were to make them – you can really see where he is coming from with outfits like the above and I would say it is his duty to continue to create.
The faux-layering effect on this piece is a testament to the quality of construction that goes into Hiro’s work – rest assured this has the precision you always hope for, but rarely find in underground fashion.
This is Hiro’s S/S 2012 print to succeed the great “World Map” print that is on his current season. Satisfyingly it only repeats itself every metre or so of fabric so it keeps that hand drawn vibe nicely.
There you have it – Harajuku street fashion perfection – edgy, fresh, challenging and empowering. The purpose here is not to place yourself at the mercy of those who swarm Harajuku like they are on safari, but rather to be the lion in this metaphor, yes they are all looking at you, but you are the one in control.
You will be pleased to find out that there is now a limited amount of Hiro for sale online here (I believe they accept foreign orders on request) where you can also see some of the Bodysong and Balmung collaborations. Other than that the smattering of stockists in Harajuku will be glad to help you out if you so desire and so will I as the rest of the underground S/S exhibitions continue in Tokyo.