Riccardo Tisci Gives Japan’s Biggest Virtual Virtuoso an Haute Couture Makeover – Vogue.com
A singing Japanese hologram named Hatsune Miku has been taking the pop-music world by computer-generated storm. We asked Riccardo Tisci, the flesh-and-blood master of handmade haute couture, to dress her. Exquisiteness ensued.
Hatsune Miku is a sixteen-year-old girl from Sapporo, Japan. She has chic blue-green pigtails (Kylie Jenner isnât the only A-lister who can pull off fluorescent hair) and sings for a fan base that spikes well into the multimillions. In fact, sheâs so popular that she recently had to expand her North American tour, which began on April 23 in Seattle.
Oh, one more thing: Hatsune Miku is a hologram, an avatar, designed and built with software by the Japanese media firm Crypton Future Media, Inc., as a tool for next-level crowd-sourcing. Mikuâs songsâthousands of which are available for purchase through her record label, Karentâare user-generated: The user writes the song, then Miku sings the song. The Mileys and Justins of the world need to step it up. This is the real millennial pop star.
âSheâs so cool,â says Riccardo Tisci, almost breathlessly, as he stares at the beauty on an iPhone screen. Earlier in the year, Miku traveled thousands of miles to Paris (via fiber-optic cables, of course) to âmeetâ with the designer for a couture-gown fitting. (The photo at left was snapped two days after the Givenchy showâthe girl has access!) âThe outfit has multiple types of lace with some crocodile trim,â notes Tisci, âand intermittently, though you canât see them from far away, there are individual Swarovski crystals.â The balance is electric: Miku, the technological pyrotechnic, and Riccardo, whose couture program knows no competition when it comes to handmade intricacies. Manus x machina, totally killing it.
Tisci then makes an interesting point: âItâs insaneâJapan is 20, 30 years ahead of the rest of us.â If thatâs the case, then perhaps Miku is a bubblegum sentry visiting our lo-fi times from whatever neon-soaked era lies ahead. âShe is a travel guide to the future,â proclaims her creator, Crypton CEO Hiroyuki Itoh. Via email, the members of Anamanaguchi, the four-person (and actually human) band opening for Miku during her 2016 tour, say, âShe is the future of pop music. We are very interested in watching fiction and reality collapse in on each other.â
Miku has opened for Lady Gaga and sung with Pharrell in a video for the artist Takashi Murakami. And at press time, she was looking at the notion of navigating her very first Met Ball (in her Givenchy stunner, of course)âor was she? âI want to ask her to be my date,â says Tisci. âBut . . . letâs see what she says. She might be too busy.â