Sofie Gaudaen – Ainu Stroke

The habits and clothes of the North Japanese Ainu people was the point of departure for this collection: the Joker-like black face paint and tattoos of the women in this society (used as a guard against bad vibes) are translated into bold jet-black brush strokes on the kimono shaped silhouettes.

The ‘guard’ of the Japanese ink-black paint is combined with a similar western ‘body shield’: prosthetics, band aid and orthopedic instruments in pastel colors which exude a feeling of tender care. The sharp, graphic kimono shapes with geometric motifs from the Ainu are translated into a western silhouette with vibrant red, orange and purple.

Working with famous textile designer Anita Evenepoel, Gaudaen created geometric patterns in the prosthetic shape wear, creating an embossed effect, by placing spacers between the mesh fabric. The collection is a complete fusion of the east- ern and western notions of self-care, topped off with Japanese style lacquered sandals held together by a medical elastic band. 

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(all pictures: (c) Etienne Tordoir –