Yohji Yamamoto is known for the avant-garde spirit of his clothing. His signature oversized silhouettes in black often feature drapery in varying textures.
His two main lines Yohji Yamamoto and Y's are stocked in high-end department stores worldwide and, in 2007, clocked sales above $100 million, according to the company. Yamamoto's other lines include Pour Homme, Costume d'Homme and the diffusion line Coming Soon.
Yamamoto has also collaborated on pieces, collections and lines with a number of other brands, including Adidas (Y-3), Hermès, Mikimoto and Mandarina Duck; and with artists such as Tina Turner, Sir Elton John, Placebo, Takeshi Kitano, Pina Bausch and Heiner Müller.
Poor decisions by finance managers pushed the brand into debts of more than $65 million in 2009, which angered Yamamoto and led to a company restructuring. The private equity firm Integral Corp restructured Yohji Yamamoto Inc. and by November 2010 the company was out of debt.
Born in Tokyo, Yamamoto graduated from Keio University with a degree in law in 1966. His further studies in fashion design at Bunka Fashion College led to a degree in 1969.