Seldom considered a Japanese brand, JULIUS is often associated with the likes of Rick Owens, Damir Doma, and Boris Bidjan Saberi. Opposing Japanese streetwear’s vibrant colors, JULIUS opts for blacks, that in turn contrast even-darker blacks. With a penchant for abnormally long jeans and elongated tanks JULIUS is seemingly diametrically opposed to the ivy-inflected styles that have informed the foundation of modern Japanese menswear. Creative director Tatsuro Horikawa, however, has been inspired by his native culture since birth, eschewing traditional styles and offering a fresh take on traditional and ceremonial garb.

Born on Kyushu—an isolated island in southwest Japan—in the early 1970s, Horikawa emigrated to Tokyo at a young age where he quickly grew to embrace the “pop feeling,” courtesy of the underground movements. He describes his childhood growing up in Neo-Tokyo as a future-wasteland, which “exists in [his] consciousness and in the consciousness of whole generations who saw Akira, Blade Runner, and Mad Max.” Horikawa defines underground Tokyo through its incorporation of techno and industrial music, a movement with which he easily identifies. Through those raucous techno and underground clubs, Horikawa was drawn towards music, which he dabbled with in high school. Eventually, though, he chose to pursue art.

Follow Alexander on Instagram here.