Last month, I traveled to Japan for the first time to play an assortment of DJ gigs. From the overwhelming streets of Tokyo and Osaka to Kyoto’s abundance of ancient temples, I thrust myself into this adventure with all of my body and soul, and was given more than enough sustenance for both in return. Of the people who gave both time and love to me there, Maiko Asami remains one of the most amazing. As the founder of Tokyo’s premiere queer (prequeer?) dark party SODOM, she’s helping redefine trve underground nightlife in a city that sorely needs it. It’s not only culture that Asami’s hands shape, however, as she is also the force behind accessory line Black Triangle.
“At first what I was making wasn’t so different from when I was 15 and putting studs into leather jackets”, says Asami. “That’s why I started doing Black Triangle; just for myself. But I soon aspired to push for a more high-fashion look.” Rather than trendy witchiness, the triangle represents something deeper for Asami: a powerful symbol connected not only to her sexuality, but also to the way she lives her life and views the world. Music, of course, does play a role, from goth to hip-hop, and she hopes that her designs express her varied influences. Though made originally for her own use, others soon became enamored with her work and her designs became known throughout Tokyo’s underground—and, increasingly, internationally.
I’ve been watching BT evolve steadily since I first discovered it in 2011. Asami’s style has grown more advanced with every collection, each bound to black leather and focusing on the colors gold and silver. Her new line Anlage (a word whose meaning—a primordial foundation—fits perfectly to the line’s chunkily elegant and clawlike designs) is her strongest yet and could easily be sold in any of Tokyo’s many, many expensive shops. In comparison with her past lines, this one is simpler but also sharper, more defined. URL is proud to present the online premiere of her new lookbook (click for bigger pics). No need to worry about all the drooling you’ll be doing—the pieces wipe clean. View the shape of things to come below.
Photo | Bungo Tsuchiya
Styling | Tatsuya Shimada
Hair & Makeup | iZUTSU
Special Thanks | BABYLON (Taka & Kyoko)
Interview Translation | Caroline Sundermeyer