It is called “Bape Head” and it is the large and massive event staged by Bape on Wednesday evening in New York City on the occasion of its 30th anniversary. To celebrate this day, the brand organized a fashion show accompanied by various performances by famous artists, a formula proposed by the brand’s founder Nigo to combine music and fashion under one roof. Held at the Terminal 5 live music venue, the event saw the debut of several Fall 2023 menswear and womenswear collections and special performances by Lola Brooke, Coi Leray and Lil Baby.
The main idea was to pay homage to the elements that made the brand unique, defining its street and multicultural spirit, through a fashion show that gave space to the entire brand universe.
In fact, more than 100 looks signed A Bathing Ape and all the new collections of its sub-labels, Aape, Bape Black, Bapy and Apee has been presented on the catwalk. Each brand was inspired by the themes “SPORT MANIA”, “COLLEGE CLASSIC” and “DENIM PAINTER”.
Featuring an impressive array of menswear and womenswear looks comprised of ready-to-wear, accessories and footwear, each label’s Fall/Winter 2023 collections brought an eclectic mix of influences to the runway, showcasing some unexpected designs and revisiting iconic traits such as the ABC CAMO motif, the BAPESTA sneakers and the Shark Hoodie, to then leave the stage for musical sets.
The brand brought out the likes of Chania Ray, Chris Brickiey, Fabolous, Fiffany Luu, Fivio Foreign, Hamidou Diallo, Jaylen Brown, Jalen Mills, Jett Kain, JT, Kacion Mayers, KJ Martin, Lynn Ban, Maria Beltre, Pardi and others to honor its anniversary.
The Bape line (the biggest collection of the night) explored sportier, hip-hop and ’90s styles, with women’s basketball shorts paired with an après-ski-inspired sweater; logomania and warped camouflage denim; graphic down jackets and teddy bear jackets, or men’s flannels, hoodies, and elaborate layering of workwear, overalls and varsity jackets.
Not least were the Underlines such as Bapy which proposed a focus on “the essentials of the office” and Apee which addressed to the Gen Z and Japanese Gyaru audience with nostalgia for the early 2000s.
Although it was founded in 1993 in Japan by designer Nigo (current creative director of Kenzo), the brand’s choice to celebrate its 30th anniversary in New York is due to the close ties that the brand has established over time with the city.
“Bape chose to celebrate its 30th anniversary in New York, a city that has been an important market for the brand since it expanded outside of Japan,” said Thomas Hui, chief operating officer of Bape. “New York’s connection to streetwear, music, street art and hip-hop culture has been closely associated with Bape throughout its history, making it an ideal location to pay tribute to the city and culture that played a significant role in the brand’s success.”
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