Masks and balaclavas are a powerful symbol of anarchist and antifascist movements. Itʼs about anonymity. Itʼs not about your face, itʼs about your idea, about your aesthetics. The mask is a powerful symbol of that.
Nadya Tolokonnikova is a founding member of Russian female protest and punk group, Pussy Riot, that has been radically standing up for fundamental human rights for the last six years behind brightly covered balaclavas. This leading lady tells us why they decided to put on the symbolic mask that historically provokes anarchy; a mask that Kenzo Takada iconically referenced in his 1979 campaign shot by Hans Feurer. This past fall OC co-founders Carol Lim and Humberto Leon presented Kenzo’s La Collection Memento N°1 to honor the house’s groundbreaking designer, a man who wasn’t afraid to shake up the industry. The brightly colored balaclavas were a tribute to him and women like Pussy Riot who aren’t afraid to stand up. Below we share a passage Nadya wrote ahead of Kenzo’s Fall/Winter ‘17 Show.