Eiko Ishioka, who won an Oscar for her striking and avant garde costumes in Francis Ford Coppola’s “Dracula,” has died at the age of 73. In the foreword to her 2000 book “Eiko On Stage,” Coppola described her work as “breathtakingly original, strange and sensuous.” Tracy Roberts, her studio manager, told the LA Times that Ishioka died Jan 21. in Tokyo of pancreatic cancer. Her work was most recently seen in in Tarsem Singh’s “Immortals” and in the ongoing Broadway play “Spider Man: Turn Off the Dark.” She also designed the over-the-top gowns in Singh’s upcoming “Mirror, Mirror.”

Kellan Lutz, whose Poseidon in “Immortals” wore Ishioka’s elaborate shell-inspired helmet, Tweeted: “RIP to the angelic EIKO ISHIOKA! It was an honor wearing your magical creations! Such an inspiration. Such a sweet soul! Forever remembered!”

The Japanese artist began her career as a graphic designer in the 1970s and early ’80s, and would go on to earn an Oscar, a Grammy and two Tony Award nominations. The Grammy was for best album package as art director for Miles Davis’ “Tutu,” and the Tony nominations for her costumes and sets for “M. Butterfly.” In 2002, she designed costumes for the Cirque du Soleil show “Varekai” and several uniforms for athletes at the Winter Olympics and directed the “Coccoon” video for Bjork.

Among her memorable movie costumes were Jennifer Lopez’s bodysuit in Singh’s surreal “The Cell,” and a scarlet robe with a 22-foot train for Gary Oldman in “Dracula.”

“I suppose you could say I’m obsessed with creating work that has never been seen before,” she told the New Zealand Herald in 2007. “When I design, I repeat it to myself often, like a mantra.”

[via LAT]


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