Kenzo founder died of coronavirus

Clothing from fashion brand Kenzo
Photo: NeydtStock /

Kenzo Takada, the founder of fashion brand Kenzo, died from the coronavirus. The colourful designer of Japanese origin died in Paris at the age of 81.


From Jungle Jap to LVMH

On Sunday 4 October Kenzo Takada died in Paris as a result of a corona infection. The fashion designer, who gave his first name to the fashion house of the same name, became known worldwide from the 1970s onwards for his cheerful prints and bright colours. Following the news of his death, numerous designers and fashion players pay tribute on social media.

In 1965 Takada moved from his native Japan to Paris, originally with the intention of staying there for two years. However, he would never leave. As a boy Takada didn't get the chance to study fashion in Japan, but his designs and his own store in Paris called Jungle Jap were discovered in 1971 by fashion magazine Elle.

The label soon caused a furore, although Takada was forced to change the name: in the United States, the pejorative term "Jap" garnered criticism. Kenzo was thus born. At the height of his success, in 1993, Takada sold the brand to luxury holding company LVMH, which still owns the label today. Kenzo Takada himself retired in 1999 at the age of 60.