Imagine being so famous and controversial that now you're making appearances fully masked, in tattered-looking clothes, and without any shoes on. For Kanye, it may be a way of remaining incognito, but he's the only one dressing up like this so perhaps it's keeping the attention firmly placed on him - just like he wants.
In case you've been lost at sea for the last year, Kanye West is supposed to currently be 'cancelled'. And yet, the CEO of one of the world's biggest sports apparel companies can't keep his name out of his mouth, and he's been spotted back at fashion shows - even teasing new music in the process.
It would be anyone's guess that Kanye - or 'Ye' - certainly has the opinion of himself as being unable to be cancelled. And recovery from previous controversies and feuds, along with his latest movements, may just prove that to be the case.
Let's take his famous long-running beef with Taylor Swift as an example, You'd think Taylor - one of the biggest musicians in the world would want to stay out of Kanye's way given the negative press that has followed the backlash to his antisemitic remarks praising Adolf Hitler and the Nazis that have significantly hurt members of the Jewish community.
But nope, even Taylor couldn't help herself during the Mexico City stop of her Eras Tour only a few weeks ago. The 33-year-old was speaking to the audience when the crowd broke out into a 'Taylor' chant to which she replied: "The only way to be interrupted, and I would know."
The reference was clear. In 2009, Kanye stormed the stage at the MTV VMAs while Taylor was accepting her award for Best Female Video. He declared that Beyonce's music video deserved to win over Swift's.
But more recent events further prove that Kanye isn't fully out of the picture yet as an attempted return to the forefront is rumoured.
Adidas return for Kanye?
As it stands, Kanye was let go from Adidas back in October 2022. A statement at the time read: "Adidas does not tolerate antisemitism and any other sort of hate speech. Ye’s recent comments and actions have been unacceptable, hateful and dangerous, and they violate the company’s values of diversity and inclusion, mutual respect and fairness."
Since then, the company has sold off remaining 'Yeezy' brand stock this year - sales which totalled €400m - despite severing ties.
Adding to this, Adidas CEO Bjørn Gulden recently spoke on Norwegian podcast 'In Good Company' and was asked about Ye's antisemitic comments.
Gulden said: "Both in music and what I call street culture. So he’s extremely creative and has together with Adi created a Yeezy line that was very successful.
"And then, as creative people, he did some statements, which wasn’t that good. And that caused Adi to break the contract and withdraw the product. Very unfortunate, because I don’t think he meant what he said and I don’t think he’s a bad person – it just came across that way."
After all, this is business and nothing speaks louder than money. It's a testament to his unexplainable enduring appeal that Yeezy brand can still sell nearly half a million Euros in items when Kanye is in fact supposed to be in the shadows (much like how he has been dressing recently).
Gulden's comments make it hard to say that at least, the door hasn't been at least left a little bit open to a potential return.
Bjørn Gulden was announced as the Adidas CEO only weeks after Adidas cut ties with Ye.
The 57-year-old Norwegian was the CEO of Puma since before 2013 and previously worked at Adidas as Senior Vice President of Apparel and Accessories from 1992 to 1999.
Adding to this, he was previously CEO of Danish jewellery brand Pandora, Managing Director of Europe’s largest footwear retailer Deichmann, President of Rack Room Shoes, and held various management positions at Helly Hansen. His impressive business CV is further propped up by the fact he was also Chairman of the Board of Salling Group, Denmark’s largest food retailer.
Before a corporate career, Gulden was a professional football and handball player. He played football for 1. FC Nürnberg in the German 2. Bundesliga, and for Bryne and Strømsgodset in the Norwegian Premier League and handball for Haslum in Norway’s first league.
Kanye: New Music
Away from Adidas, there is some suggestion that Kanye could return to his roots in music.
At a recent fashion show in London, he premiered a new track that many think will form part of a new album. A snippet includes the lyrics: "Lifestyle's a movie role, but I ain't Tom Hanks, 'Tryna' go to war with me, I'm bringing all tanks". It seems Ye is in as defiant form as ever.
Last month it was also reported that he has spent the summer in the studio crafting a new album which could be "imminent".
And while the big headlines surrounding Kanye in Italy were about his 'activities' with Bianca Censory on a boat in Venice, he also made a surprise return to the stage for the first time earlier last month at Travis Scott's Rome show for his new album.
As mentioned, only days ago Kanye was spotted at Mowalola SS24 fashion show that was part of London Fashion Week.
Sporting an interesting look, Kanye is making his presence in fashion felt once more. A new independent Yeezy line could be the result, or a collaboration with other brands like A.P.C. where he has previously been involved.
At the same time, Ye's "wife" Bianca also seems to be upping her fashion game with a variety of edgy new looks including nude sheer dresses and in London was seen wearing a bodysuit with a matching white fluffy headpiece.
As ex-wife Kim Kardashian was Kanye's pivot to getting his looks on fashion runways, it seems that Bianca could be playing a similar role.