Yoshikazu Yamagata is not your average fashion designer. He scours the streets for his models and then takes 50 metres of fabric to fashion an outrageous garment on their body.
His musical equivalent would be Atsuhiro Ito, who fashions abstract noises from a fluorescent lighting instrument called an optron, or Mamoru Okuno, who creates soundscapes from the act of cooking noodles.
They are among 10 underground and cutting-edge Japanese artists who will perform for one night only at the Royal Hall of Industries tomorrow in a cultural-exchange event called Big in Japan.
''It's a real cultural injection, they're in and out of here in a night but they plant a lot of seeds for the local arts community,'' said curator Paul Wilson.
The event is being curated by the Northern Beaches-born international fashion label ksubi but, in a sign of the times, the cash has been provided by Kirin, a Japanese beer brand in the Lion Nathan portfolio.
As funding for arts programs in Australia has steadily dried up, the arts community have looked elsewhere.
The result is a proliferation of events for young people sponsored by alcohol companies ranging from short film festivals to art exhibitions and band competitions.
In exchange for funding, the brands benefit from kudos and access to their target market.
''There are a lot more events available in terms of the enormous growth of music festivals, but sport has become a very cluttered and expensive medium for sponsors so brands are looking for more alternatives and the arts are a very viable alternative,'' said Carl Gardiner, the director of Mushroom Marketing, which forges partnerships between brands and the music industry.
The Preventative Health Taskforce estimates that while alcohol advertising expenditure is $119 million, unmeasured advertising from sponsorship and other events is likely to be two to three times that amount.
And sponsorship is not subjected to the restrictions applied to alcohol advertising.
''The things we know drive alcohol consumption and harm at a population level are price, availability and advertising,'' said Anthony Shakeshaft, associate professor at the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre. ''So I would say there ought to be much tighter restrictions considering this is de facto advertising.''
Greg Segal, the director of the brand entertainment agency mixitup, which brought together ksubi and Kirin for Big in Japan, said it knocked back some companies because they did not have genuine intentions.
''When it works well it works really well,'' he said. ''There is a lot of potential and a lot of depth for brands to link with arts.''
Mr Gardiner said he would like to see more government support for arts events with a moderation message. ''The music industry provides fantastic, well-targeted avenues to challenge drinking … but there is little government interest in [such] initiatives.''