Tuesday, 12 May 2015

DIOR Cruise 2016 Palais Bulles

Has a word yet been coined for fashion’s new way of showing resort collections? It needs to be and it might well begin with an e: they’ve turned into events on an extravagant, extreme, exotic, experiential scale. In the last week, editors have literally circled the globe to witness Chanel showing in Seoul, Louis Vuitton at Palm Springs, and all are now in the South of France, boggling over what Raf Simons and Christian Dior have just laid on before their jet-lagged eyes: access to a mind-blowing 1989 terracotta “bubble” house owned by Pierre Cardin, blissful views over the sea, and, to cap it off, fireworks vast fountains of silver and gold cascading across the Mediterranean night sky.

Strangely enough, this sudden three-brand race to transport esteemed guests to the furthest-flung and most original of places has ended in a draw. As it turned out, every one of them chose to set their collections against the same sort of curviform futuristic backdrops: Chanel under the spaceship-like hull of Zaha Hadid’s Dongdaemun Design Plaza; Louis Vuitton, beneath the swooping space-age canopy of Bob Hope’s John Lautner house; and Christian Dior in M. Cardin’s bubble-shaped dwelling dreamed up by the Hungarian architect Antti Lovag.

Le Palais Bulles: A utopian project that encompasses earth, sky and sea, where the future is built organically from the forms and architecture of the past. In this Collection Croisiére, Raf Simons, Artistic Director of Christian Dior, looks to the landscape and memory of the South of France. Gaining inspiration from the colours, textures and light of the natural world of the Cote d’Azur, together with the style of the people who have inhabited it, the designer draws on tradition and technique to realise clothing for today. In so doing, Le Palais Bulles (Bubble Palace) becomes a metaphor for the approach to the collection overall.

The question is, what effect does all this have on the clothes? Is there any qualitative difference between showing in the normal confines of the Paris system, and breaking out into the summery air, somewhere completely else?
“I like to go out I don’t know why, but it’s more relaxing,” Raf Simons said, after his show. “I like to go into a real space. This one is unique in its extremity, I think. It’s not a sort of mastodon of modernist architecture, but an intimate, feminine, extremely private place.”
Simons said he had been fantasizing about the idea of having a show there for five years, ever since he was working for Jil Sander. Now, it’s come to pass, it is Christian Dior’s heritage he’s filtering through his observations of the southern, sun-drenched landscape and the people in it.  
“You automatically see the sky differently here, and the earth,” he said. “I think about all the different communities juxtaposed here: artists, normal people in the markets, festival people, the jet-set, and how all that all slides together.”
It resulted in a dynamically believable sequence obviously thought out in Simons’s head, and incredibly worked by Dior’s craftspeople in glinting fabrics and craft-like embroidery—but not so technically overthought as to be plodding. He is getting good at overlaying and contradicting simultaneous ideas in just the way young women like: sporty things with elaborate things, pretty things with weird things, and trophy after wantable trophy as earrings, shoes, and bags.

The silhouettes of Christian Dior’s fifties full-skirted coats came lopped off at the hip to form balloon-sleeved checked jackets or minidresses, and shown with shorts or rather, what might have been variations on shorts-cum-skirts. Ribbed poor-boy knit dresses coolly disintegrated into fluttery, lacy shreds in the skirts, and heads turned as a couple of laser-cut leather dresses walked by, tantalizingly showing and then not showing naked skin as the girls walked.

It was the way they walked that grabbed attention, too. Elegant little, pointy flat ankle boots, with tiny covered buttons and inserts of rich brocade compressed three references into one: “Roger Vivier, Siouxsie and the Banshees, and Marie Antoinette!” They allowed the girls to stride through the room of the bubble house, up and down the pink marble stairs, and through the tunnel-like corridors with an ease and naturalness.

In the end? The whole collection looked refreshing and dense with variety everything from practical tailoring to funny knitted swimsuits, through to elegant long, bias-cut dresses and all the better for being seen in the open air. Incredible scenery or maybe just different scenery from the clockwork routine of the runway really does add something to the perception of clothes. Not every brand or designer is wealthy enough to airlift audiences half way around the world, but there’s a shift going on here in the presentation of fashion.

Selections by ANDREA JANKE Finest Accessories

Photo Credit/Source: The House of DIOR

Backstage by ANDREA JANKE via Instagram @andreajankeofficial
Jason Lloyd-Evans / IndigitalImages 

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In the past years CHANEL marks a great resort tradition with its previous presentations in Dubai, Dallas, Singapore, Edimbourg, Chateau de Versailles, Bombay at Grand Palais and Byzance. This year, the CHANEL Cruise 2015/16 fashion show took place on May 4th, 2015 at the Dongdaemun Design Plaza in Seoul.
Chanel’s sampling of the high-energy, happy vibe of South Korea’s fashion-obsessed youth culture was translated into a vast white set decorated with primary-colored dots, shiny plastic stools in a thicket of lamps on poles. The immersive synthetic hyperreal environment a sensation something like being inside a computer-generated 22nd-century K-pop video created the perfect scenery for looking at the clothes and watching the other key players in the crowds of young and pretty Koreans dressed to the nines in Chanel.

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