June 4, 2011

Once upon a time in Mexico or the Kenzo défilé

In the beginning, there was a big, bonbon pink clutch. Then, a brown cardboard appeared having a mask bow-tied to it, just fit for a Halloween outfit. The page arrangement showed multicolor flowers scattered on the mask composing a funny skull with a heart-shaped nose.

In the room, other skeletal mariachi printed cardboards were quietly waiting on the chairs for their guests to appear.

And since an invitation is usually anticipant of the main lines of the collection, the guesses for Kenzo were in harmony with the vitally alive colors of the herbs on the mask. The designer surprised us, however, with cold colors and sober prints. “I usually use bright colors, bright prints, bright flowers for the Kenzo collections, but this time, my intention was to tell a different story,” Antonio Marras confessed to me.

The catwalk presentation on Latin rhythms was supervised by a metallic curtain riddled with multicolor small light bulbs in the form of geometrical flowers resembling the recurring patterns in the Kenzo prints. That was the background for the projection of an inflow of silhouettes without a defined waistline, thinned by wearing cashmere cardigans or skirts long enough to reach the ankles.

The collection had a three-fold orientation, being conceived as a praise to the designer’s muses. “Three different women have inspired me. The first is Tina Modotti, the Italian actress and painter, living in Mexico. The second woman is Georgia O’Keeffe and the last one is Frida Kahlo”, said Marras.

For the Fall/Winter Collection 2011-2012, Marras achieved a surprising blend of stripes, flowers or prints of pure Mexican inspiration, resulting in ethnic garbs predominantly colored in the earth tones with beats of acid yellow. To the end of the collection, Bordeaux red and fluid dresses made their appearance. An innovative element with Kenzo was the use, for the first time, of a strong plain black along the entire length of the outfit.

“Antonio Marras is a very good designer. What he did was very elegant. I sometimes think that his color palette is too dark for Kenzo. This is a Fall/Winter collection, so maybe that reflects it. But, if you take that and make it a bit brighter, it would be perfect,” said Godfrey Deeny, the most influential fashion critic in Paris.

Kenzo’s dark colored clothes were tempered by a few bags of minimalist design, painted, however, in banana yellow or animated print. Antonio Marras is one of those designers who give the prints a “mathematical” dimension owing to his calling of genuine expert in exact sciences, because one needs to really focus one’s attention to completely decipher the pattern printed on the cloth. That the conception of the singular prints was the result of an extraordinary study effort was also testified by the fact that, from a distance, the pattern seemed to be something different from what was actually illustrated.

Nolwenn Leroy, the French singer and composer, stated her admiration for the scrupulous care for the details and concluded in a flattering manner: “It’s so unique, so full of inspiration that makes me write new songs.”

The influence exerted upon fashion consumers spells nothing else but reverie and there is only one reaction to this: Viva Kenzo!


Photos: www.fashioninquisitive.com