Uchiide: Bringing street art to beauty

Haute street


By Terry Saw

Uchiide: Bringing street art to beauty

To say it has been a big week for shu uemura’s International Artistic Director, Uchiide, is an understatement. Fresh from launching his second annual Vision of Beauty Collection Vol.02 in Malaysia just the night before, plus a hectic schedule that would rival an A-lister’s, he’s still all-smiles as we caught up with him over coffee to discover Haute Street: Vision of Beauty Collection Vol.02 – the new makeup collection, on which he spent two painstaking years honing to perfection.

Of all creative inspirations, what made you to look to street art as the foundation of your new collection?

“I’ve always had an appreciation for street art. That said, there are times where it is done illegally – which I do not condone – but I do genuinely respect the quality and art itself for its creativity, originality and individuality.

“The way I see it, street art and beauty share one similar approach; street artists inject vibrant, colourful life to concrete cityscapes the way makeup artists beautify women. The most important elements for a good piece of street art are the venue and the artist. It’s about the artist applying the right colours in the right places to make a good piece of artwork – again, similar to the approach a makeup artist would take.”

Who are some of the street artists that inspired you?

“I like English street artist, film director and painter Banksy for his dark humour-inspired pieces, and French pioneer street artist Blek le Rat for his impeccable stenciling work.”

How did the collaboration with New York-based, Japanese-German Italian artist Ōyama Enrico Isamu Letter come about?

“We tried working with different types of street art (and artists), but it was only when the partnership opportunity with Enrico surfaced that it really felt right. His signature ‘Quick Turn Structure’ (QTS) method, is a black and white, minimal yet spontaneous motif stemming from the visual language of graffiti culture that resonated with my vision for this collection.

“The sharp points or edges you see in the QTS relates to the beauty points I am focusing for this collection – corners of the eyes, corners of the lips and the sharp points of the cheekbones, which is beautifully translated in Enrico’s artwork for the collection.”

What is a good introduction for women who are seeking to be a little more experimental with their makeup?

“Start with the eye palettes – the first three shades are easy to wear and gives instant dimension and depth to the eyes. Choose just one colour from the next three shades to add a subtle accent to the eyes.

“Also, you can go for a really modern look that is completely effortless to recreate by highlighting the V-shapes of the face. As mentioned earlier, this includes: the outer and inner corners of the eyes, the ends of the eyebrows, your cheekbones and the corners of your lips, which is the focus of the collection. Highlighting these V shapes with a vibrant colour will really make your features pop.”

The one message you’d like women to take away from this collection is…

“Every one of us is capable of discovering a different dimension in beauty through creativity and freedom of expression. Use makeup as a means to show your originality and be comfortable (and confident) with that side of yourself.”

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Haute Street: Vision of Beauty Vol. 02 is now available at all shu uemura boutiques and counters. 

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