For the Yohji Yamamoto Autumn/Winter 1991-1992 'non-collection' constructed from wood and tin foil, the designer approached Peter Saville directly to devise a campaign. The full story behind this campaign can be found in an article from Document Journal by Hilary Moss: Saville recalls, "I was told, 'Yohji would like you to do a series of communications without models, without clothes. Just look at the collection and make an abstract response to his work.'"
The men's collection proved easier to interpret. "In '90, I was into photo libraries, so I paired statements with images of cars and swimming pools, as you might have had in a regular ad. But these indicated the 'wrong' things, like 'A Guide to Never-Never Land,' and 'This Was Tomorrow,' to relay the sentiment of, 'Something’s gone awry, hasn’t it?' And Yohji liked it." Yohji’s distributors were horrified: not only were their own advertising predicting the end of their industry, it didn’t even feature the clothes.
By contrast, Saville tried multiple responses to the womenswear collection before sending Yamamoto the inspiration they eventually used—photographs of Fasching, an ancient northern European carnival. "Yohji doesn’t want to give you a brief. He does his bit and he's gone, which, of course, is brilliant, yet is also an enormous responsibility," Saville says. "Yohji can't say he doesn't like what you've sent him because he approaches you as an artist. He's done his work and you're an artist he likes, and you've done your work, and it's not incorrect—but if he doesn't feel it, doesn't connect with it, he won't use it."
Writer: My Clothing Archive