“MYne” and “beauty:beast”, a Tokyo-based designer brand by Takao Yamashita, have collaborated to create the track jacket and the track pants.
The collaboration items will go on sale on Saturday 22 May.
The brand “beauty:beast” was created by Takao Yamashita, who made his debut at the Paris Collections only three years after the brand’s birth in 1991.
In 1995, the brand participated in the Tokyo collection, and attracted many people with its punkish, radical, and sometimes even philosophical collection pieces that transcended the boundaries between mode and street.
Even after the brand’s closure in 2000, the brand has been revitalized for about 20 years, with a movement to seek out archived pieces.
This year, the brand celebrates its 30th anniversary with a reprint of the now legendary track setup and a collaboration with “MYne”, a leader in the Tokyo street scene.
How did this unique fusion of two brands, which crosses over time and values, come about, and what were the thoughts that led to its completion?
Kamiya, who is in charge of design for MYne, and Yamashita of beauty:beast talk about this collaboration.
Kamiya (K): I was introduced to Mr. Yamashita by someone who told me about a brand called beauty:beast. When I heard about it, I didn’t know much about the brand. I was working at a vintage clothing store, and the owner of the store liked Berne, Wald, and 2047. When we were talking about this project, there was a moment when I felt a connection. That’s when I got excited (laughs) and thought, “Wow. The more I got to know the brand, the more I thought it was an amazing brand. I couldn’t believe I got this offer, and I was so excited (laughs).
Yamashita (Y) : I was very happy to be asked to collaborate with the next generation of designers, as they are from different generations. However, the design of this item is genderless, and there is no timeline involved. That’s why I was so grateful, and I’m still embarrassed (laughs). I honestly feel that I am getting older these days, and the times are changing rapidly, aren’t they? I look forward to meeting new designers every time, and I get very excited. I know it’s a bit of a misnomer to call me a competitor, but for me, people who can share their personal problems and pains and then talk about how to make things in order to move on are very precious and rare. There are many different types of creators out there, but I’m glad to have met you, and I got the impression that you are a very positive person.
K: Thank you very much. To be honest, I was groping my way through the project with an incomplete image until halfway through, so I’m finally relieved when the samples came up and I was able to create something good (laughs). This year is your 30th anniversary, right? I think it’s great that we were able to do this project in such a meaningful year for Mr. Yamashita. I think it’s true what you say about transcending the times. I’m still in my twenties, so I think I was able to express the culture and movement that Yamashita-san was thinking about when he was in his twenties by mixing it with myself, who is living in my twenties now. On the other hand, I wonder how much our generation knows about beauty beasts, which I think will be the key word this time. I read something about it, but at that time, the main target was from 18 years old to late 20s, and 70% of them were men?
Y : That was certainly the case at the time.
K: Our brand also targets that generation. I even have a sense of fate about how to express these items to the generation that doesn’t know anything about beauty. The 90’s and 2000’s are in vogue right now, and I’m happy to be able to express the atmosphere of that time by collaborating with beauty:beast for the first time.
Y : The “KEEP OUT” series was a back item for the 1998 show, I think. There were words like “CAUTION KEEP OUT”, not “stay away from me”, because I tend to be withdrawn. At that time, there was a theme of distance between people. There was a part of me that wanted to stay away from people, but there was also a part of me that wanted to stay away. There was also the fear of changing oneself by letting people get close. I had such intricate feelings about this series. When I met Mr. Kamiya, I was looking forward to seeing how he would translate the keyword “keep out” into the modern world. As it happens, social distance became the standard at the Corona vortex. At that time, “social withdrawal” and “communicable diseases” were just beginning to become social issues. Young people like Shinji Ikari from the anime Evangelion were asking themselves questions and searching for their place in the world, including myself, and they were being asked how to live. One of the tools I used to express myself was this truck (setup). Now that we have Corona, I’ve been looking forward to seeing how Kamiya-kun would interpret Keep Out and convert it into MYne’s language for people who want to be in contact with others but can’t. When it was visualized in this photo shoot, I was really impressed. I’m also looking forward to seeing how this information, which will be sent out to the general public, will be received. It’s fun to give birth to something, but once it’s transmitted, it’s time to play catch with the person who received it. That’s what I’m really interested in right now, how you’re going to play catch with that ball.
K: The collections I make are based on music. If I were to borrow Mr. Yamashita’s words, I would say that there are words and then a phrase, and in my case, my style is to put a song into clothes. In my case, I’m trying to make a song into a piece of clothing. I’ve been making this album with the feeling that everyone is wearing it and listening to it. I think that each listener has their own way of feeling a song. You may want to listen to it when you’re playing with others, or when you want to get excited, or when you want to be alone and quiet. I’m trying to capture the emotions that come out of each piece of clothing at the moment it is worn. So when Mr. Yamashita said “I can feel the sound” during the photo shoot, I thought that was exactly what I wanted to express.
Y : There are clothes that you can hear sound and clothes that you can’t hear at all. This time I could hear the sound, a lot (laughs).
K: I think it’s the best part of being a creator that people can feel it. The other day, I developed a collection based on music, and I thought that each person who saw it had a different perspective on it. I’m looking forward to seeing how the viewers will perceive this collaboration. Yamashita-san’s way of enjoying things and my way of enjoying things are linked in some ways, but also slightly different in others. I thought it was interesting when we were talking about it.
Y: That’s right. But I’m not a good talker. Since I was a child, I’ve been misunderstood by my family as well. Everything I do with good intentions backfires (laughs). In addition, my life has been such that if I say something, it is immediately rejected. Therefore, I didn’t speak much because I felt that I would lose if I did, and I began to feel that I didn’t want to interact with people. The reason for this is that I don’t want to be misunderstood. But this is also the driving force behind my clothes. You don’t have to talk if you just want to make clothes, right? Even so, there are many people who tell me what they think of my work. I’m happy when people say positive things about my work. For me, making things serves as a conversation. People who respond to me are not negative. People who are negative end up saying, “I don’t want it. When people deny the words I say, I feel as if they are denying themselves. It’s just that the metaphor has become clothing.
K: Some people tell me straight out, and some people tell me to just feel it. From the point of view of the people who make the products, I think that’s a good thing. By the way, what do you think of the MYne collaboration from your point of view?
Y : To be honest, I really like the specs and height of MYne’s neckline, it’s so complete.
K: I’m glad. When we first talked about what we wanted to do and how we wanted to do it, I was looking at vintage Adidas jerseys from the 90s. I wanted to bring out those nuances. I incorporated the height of the neck from that era, and made the body width more modern. I thought it would be easy for the modern generation to get into and feel the details of the time. It’s also meaningful that the KEEP OUT side tape is placed there. I think it will reflect a good feeling in your next creations.
Y : It inspired me too, thank you very much. I genuinely want to try it on (laughs). It’s clothes made on the same theme, but it’s the difference between punk and grunge. In terms of musical zones, there is a gap of about 20 years. I think that nuance comes out in this piece. It’s very difficult to express something in a straightforward manner, from the perspective of a craftsman. There is a balance that exists in millimeters. If it’s a little off, it’s uncomfortable. There’s no such thing, and the balance is very comfortable.
K: That’s probably part of what I’m aiming for. I felt the same way when the samples came in, like how many centimeters the neck was. To be honest, the updated version of the reprint that Yamashita-san is making is the style I want to wear now. I’m more into this style now. It’s a little tighter and more snug, a punk feel. However, I heard that the reprint was based on the original, so when I was making the garments, I focused on the MYne style and how I could express the nuances of the original without losing the atmosphere. Personally, I think I’ve found the perfect balance.
Y : I can’t help but think of the faces of the people who have loved me for 20 years when I’m doing this. Nostalgia. Fashion is probably a genre where you should commit acts of betrayal, but there are also size specifications that you can’t betray. But there are some size specs that cannot be betrayed, so you cannot let go. It’s like living space, and I think there are a lot of people who would really like to have a spacious and free space nowadays. But there are also many people who feel more comfortable in a small space. That’s why the silhouette looks like this one. I really wanted to make it tighter, though. Back then, it was more narrow, because you would wear riders over it. The armholes were also too high. Lately, I’ve been seeing a lot of pictures on Instagram of Americans wearing archives from the 90s, and I’m secretly wondering if it’s okay to wear something so tight back then (laughs).
K: But now I’m in the “chunky” mindset. I’m gradually shortening the length of the items in my collection.
Y : It’s fit and release, and depending on the item, it’s either too tight or too loose. I don’t want to be in between. I think we’re in an age where we don’t need to be in the middle.
K: I agree with you. Right now, I want to make knitwear that is too tight or too loose.
Y : I also like the silhouette of thin and big.
K: I’d also like to see Yamashita-san’s style of clothes with a super big pitch (laughs).
Y : I’ll make it (laughs). But I’m not the type of person who can keep up with the times. I don’t want to make things for consumption. Nowadays, I think I want to make things that can be stored in the closet. I’m sure the sales people won’t like me saying this (laughs), but you know those clothes that you never wear? You know, the kind of clothes that are just sitting in your wardrobe. I want to make clothes that people will cherish, that they will wear them someday.
K: What do you think of people in their twenties today?
Y : I basically distrust people (laughs). But I also like people, though it’s contradictory, because I want to see scary things. So I really like people in their 20s. Their parents were my customers when I was making the clothes. When I was in my 20s, I was always looking for myself. I remember that, so I hope that you will soon find a job or music that you think is cool. It just so happened that I found a job making clothes, and now I have a place where I feel like I belong, but I think there are infinite possibilities for kids in their 20s. I think they are more polite and quiet than the 20-somethings of the past. I feel like there were more violent people back then (laughs).
K: This is a kind comment from you, Mr. Yamashita (laughs). As I mentioned earlier, I didn’t know much about beauty:beast to begin with, so I want to convey the brand to the customers I’m dealing with now through the filter of MYne. I want to tell the customers that I’m dealing with now about the Beauty Beast brand through the filter of MYne. If I can make any discoveries through this collaboration, I think I will be able to repay Mr. Yamashita for letting me collaborate with him this time. On the other hand, I think it will be a good opportunity to inject new sensibility into the current generation.
Y : From that point of view, I’d like to have my familiar beauty clients wear this track of yours and say, “This interpretation is better! (laughs) The girl who was my assistant 20 years ago was of the generation known as the Lost Decade, who didn’t know anything about 70s fashion. The girl who was my assistant 20 years ago was of the generation known as the Lost Decade, who didn’t know anything about 70s fashion, and she often talked about wanting to know about 70s fashion and music. In the same way, I think that young people in their twenties who don’t know anything about punk or the 90s could become interested in 90s fashion. The American girls who post their beauty clothes on SNS also say that. Many of them ask me, “What would this look like now if it existed then? I’m hoping that this collaboration will be a trigger for those kids to come back to the Sex Pistols. I think there is a sense that this is a corona trigger. The concept of the foundation of everything has collapsed, and values have become flat.
K: I feel like that’s where I’m at right now. If you look back in history, hip-hop, rock, R&B, and all kinds of other cultures came to Japan, fused together, and exploded around 2000. I feel that the current decadent mood of the Corona vortex is somehow linked to that era of 2000. Realizing this, I wanted to express the mood of 2000.
“I had clothes that I could hear sounds in and clothes that I couldn’t hear at all. This time I could hear the sound, very well.”
That’s what Mr. Yamashita says, and don’t miss the collaborative products that transcend generations.
【 KEEP OUT TRACK JACKET 】
PRICE : ¥38,000＋TAX
SIZE : S,M,L
COLOR : BLACK
【 KEEP OUT TRACK PANTS 】
PRICE : ¥31,000＋TAX
SIZE : S,M,L
COLOR : BLACK
MYne official online store