Crazy Kawaii: Kyary Pamyu Pamyuseum

Kawaii means "cute" in Japanese, and that one word embodies almost everything about popular culture. Fashion, accessories, mascots, style - it's all kawaii here. Kyary Pamyu Pamyu is a J-Pop star who got her start in the heart of kawaii, Harajuku, and has gone on to become quite successful. Her songs are catchy and fun, and the music videos are fun and relatively unique. But beyond that, Kyary's fashion style is essentially the Japanese equivalent of Lady Gaga - outrageous, cutting edge, and one of a kind.
 There are enough music videos, performances, and live appearances where Kyary has worn or included amazing fashion that an entire temporary exhibition was created. Originally displayed in 2013 in Roppongi, it returned this summer at Koshigaya Laketown mall, the largest mall in Japan. I can't find any details right now about any other locations, past or present.
 After paying your admission fee, you're given a plastic lollipop that can cause exhibits to light up or interact. And in you go!
 There are dozens of costumes on display, worn by Kyary and other performers on stage and in the music videos. The purple-top costume has a skirt made out of snack wrappers.
 Yes, photography was allowed, and encouraged. There was even a Twitter hashtag for people to share their photos.

 Most of the costumes are on stands that slowly spin around so you can see them at all angles.
 I mentioned interactive exhibits. The thing on the right is inside a box; you stick your face through the hole and your smartphone on a small stand and you can take a picture that makes it look like you are wearing the costume. There were a couple costumes like this, and were some of the "interactive" exhibits that required use of the lollipop.
 The dress on the right comes from Candy Candy, the first video I ever saw.How she ran in those heels I'll never know.

 This dress was just awesome.
 I haven't seen so much of Kyary Pamyu Pamyu's music videos to know where all the costumes come from. But that pink dress mannequin is a zombie!
 I believe these are stage costumes worn by her backup performers, though I couldn't be sure. If you watched that Candy video then you might recognize some from that as well.
Behind the backup costumes was a projected stream of music videos - I timed my photo just right to catch the Candy Candy video being shown, by chance.
The exhibit was certainly packed with pastel, and I think I got enough kawaii during my visit to last a good month or more. As I mentioned before, I don't know if the museum is headed for a new location, but it certainly was a fun way to spend an hour or so!


  1. Damn, I'm a HUGE Kyary fan. I would've loved to see this exhibit.

  2. Maybe it will come to the States! Kyary toured in America a little bit a couple years ago. At least, she went to LA; I'm not sure if she made it to the east coast.

  3. Well one of my coworkers stated that she saw a Kyary concert over in NYC so she has come to the east coast. That said I don't think there's a whole lot of potential for the museum to come stateside.

  4. Yeah, it's not going to be a huge demand, but the Evangelion exhibit went to a few cities in Australia before even being put on in Japan... as far as I can tell.