Known for his inventive, off-kilter headpieces, the work of Katsuya Kamo is difficult to define. Using materials as diverse as feathers, paper, flowers and hair, his craft combines disciplines including hairstyling, millinery and design. Veering from the very delicate, to bold and structured – no two pieces are the same.
Growing up in Fukuoka, a young Kamo dreamed of becoming a clothing designer. However, living in what he describes as “extreme countryside” meant that opportunities for creative work were very limited. “I didn’t know where to start,” he recalls, “the closest person I knew who was linked to the fashion industry was a hairdresser in a salon, so that’s where I went”. In his early teens at the time, Kamo threw himself into work at the salon (“I don’t have the personality of a quitter so I just continued to work and work…”) and eventually began assisting renowned Japanese hairstylist Tetsuya Tamura, president of the influential Mod’s Hair agency. “I learned a lot from him, in terms of morals and ethics,” he says, “It was almost like a philosophy, I learned not so much about the skills, but more of a thinking approach towards hair”.