A pair of Tokio Kumagai shoes, my vintage gem, purple velvet with a golden design. I was given this pair of shoes by my friend Viviane in Paris many years ago. At that time, I had no idea who was Tokio Kumagai…Size 5, I liked them, this was enough for me. I have worn them for concerts…and the last time must have been to attend David Tibet’s exhibit opening at Isis Gallery in London. Since I have only been looking at them.
Tokio Kumagai was a Japanese fashion designer, active during the 1970s and 80s. In 1970, he graduated from the prestigious Bunka Fashion College, then he relocated to Paris where he worked under Jean-Charles de Castelbajac.
In 1980, he opened his first shoe boutique in Paris and became known for his playful designs of shoes resembling cars and mice . (Much before the mouse shoes by Marc Jacobs, there were the mice shoes by Kumagai)
View The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Kumagaï approached the shoe as a surrealist canvas for representations of various objects and animals, inspired by the work of fine artists such as Dali, Mondrian, and Kandinsky.
In 1984, Kumagai created a collection called “Shoes to Eat”, “Taberu Kutsu”.
These pumps were made very realistically to produce the same texture as the thinly-sliced beef used in Japanese “sukiyaki” cuisine. (very Lady Gaga’s meat dress)
View The Kyoto Costume Institute
Other shoes in this collection looked like they were constructed from sundaes and rice dishes.
View AnOther Magazine
Absolutly limitless! I like that.
Kumagai also launched a prêt-à-porter line.
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