During the Paris Men’s Fashion Week, Carol Lim and Humberto Leon bid Kenzo farewell with a touching show inspired by the Japanese Ama underwater women. The most likely candidate as the next creative director of the brand: Felipe Oliveira Baptista.
Today an official announcement by Sylvie Colin, CEO of Kenzo, confirms that the designer from the Azores will be in charge of the creative supervision of all the collections:
“We chose Felipe above all because of its global artistic approach. His innovative and modern creative vision and well-rounded artistic approach will enable Kenzo to reach its full potential while respecting its unique heritage.” – Sylvie Colin
The same enthusiasm is expressed by Oliviera Baptista through his Instagram profile:
“I am extremely honored to announce my appointment as Kenzo’s new creative director. To join such an iconic Maison is a great gift and challenge. Kenzo is all about contagious freedom and movement. Everything Mr. Takada did was printed with joy, elegance and a youthful and chicky sense of humor. Kenzo’s constant celebration of Nature and cultural diversity have always been and still remains at the heart of the brand. Two subjects that never felt more relevant and compelling than today, instrumental in writing Kenzo’s Future.” – Felipe Oliveira Baptista
Born in Portugal and raised in Lisbon, Felipe falls in love with the fashion world after discovering Balenciaga‘s work. So he decides to study at Kingston University in London and, after graduating, starts working with Max Mara. In 1998 he moved to Paris, where he worked for Cerruti and Christophe Lemaire, before launching, together with his wife Séverine, his own eponymous label that will close permanently in 2014. At that time, with regard to his approach to fashion, he revealed:
In the beginning there’s a pair of scissors and some other clothes. For me, it always starts with the destruction of existing garments.
His diverse experience and talent led him to win the prestigious Hyères (in 2002 as an emerging designer) and Andam Awards, but the real popularity came in 2010 when he was appointed the creative director of Lacoste. During his time with the company, the creative man manages to double his sales, skillfully reworking the products of the French sports brand and expanding his audience, making it attractive and popular, especially among young people. How? Creating cool sportswear perfect for city life.
Now Felipe is back at the top of an important brand and the curiosity rises as to how he will apply his minimal, chic and extremely contemporary style to Kenzo’s heritage.