​buffalo legend barry kamen has died

The stylist, artist and former model was the poster boy for the eclectic and electric of the 80s Buffalo scene.

by Charlotte Gush
05 October 2015, 1:36pm

"Polaroid back stage at Gaultier woman's show. 1989. No outfit so we painted one." @barrykamen

News broke on social media last night that the legendary stylist, artist and former model Barry Kamen has died at the age of 52. A core member of the Buffalo subculture led by stylist Ray Petri in London in the 80s, he helped to shape the decade's most enduring image of men's style.

Kamen was working in a clothes shop when he met Petri, who would visit the shop to borrow clothes for fashion shoots. After their meeting, Barry and his brother Nick became muses for Petri, modeling for him and becoming the faces of the Buffalo subculture that the stylist led. The brothers' mixed heritage -- Burmese, Dutch, Irish and English -- epitomized the celebration of diversity in fashion seen in the 80s.

Having worked with Petri, Barry became a stylist in his own right and was a contributor to The Face and i-D. Working with Vivienne Westwood and Body Map, he collaborated with a number of fashion icons before they were famous, including supermodel Naomi Campbell, who he met when she was just 14.

Kamen recently worked with Dr Martens to make a film about the Buffalo subculture. London menswear label Tourne de Transmission collaborated with Kamen on a collection inspired by his art, which often features plasters and cut up newspaper headlines.

Since the news of Barry's passing spread across social media, a number of his collaborators have posted messages of love and support for his family, as well as reminiscences of their friendship and work together. Stylist Edward Enninful tweeted, "R.I.P @barrykamen, Original buffalo model and all around be lovely bloke .. thanks for paving the way for a lot us …," and Boy George tweeted, "So sad to hear of the passing of Barry Kamen. My thoughts are with Nick and the family and all that loved him. R.I.P," with further tributes pouring in from former Buffalos, artists and fashion industry figures.

barry kamen