Colm Dillane stepped out on stage wearing a green bucket hat with the entire menswear team. Rosalia performed while jumping on the roof of a vintage yellow automobile and wearing a super-puffer and XXXL track pants. In the interim, there had been a Louis Vuitton menswear collective event held in a tent in the Cour Carrée du Louvre.
This event was a composite of Colm’s ideas, the styling contributions of Ibrahim Kamara, a set conceived by the Gondry brothers, and a film by them that went out on LV channels but was not seen by the audience.
Communication that gets people’s attention mixed with the production of cult items is the name of the game for major luxury brands these days. That is not only the case with the Louis Vuitton menswear department, of course; however, this brand has entered a phase in which it is taking special care over what is to be done about creative continuity since the tragic loss of the man who uniquely convened such a large global community around it.
This man’s name was Hedi Slimane, and he was the creative force behind some of the most iconic designs from the house. The hiring of Dillane, with his can-do attitude, upbeat demeanor, and collaborative nature, as well as his self-taught, anything-can-be-done hustle from Brooklyn, is one measure of the company’s resolve to keep the flame of Virgil Abloh’s legacy blazing.
Dillane was reportedly “embedded” within the maison, which means he worked with Abloh’s existing studio crew. This is the official description. Together with Kamara, they put his ideas into reality, which included re-doing classic menswear suiting while simultaneously honoring the universal language of track suits, hoodies, and trainers at the same level. They did so with clever, surreal messaging and references to Black culture.
There is also the chance that Dillane’s own brand, KidSuper, played a role, with its childlike name and its artwork consisting of hand-drawn pictures. His multicolored, childlike drawings of people and home spaces were hyper-elaborated into Vuitton patchworked tracksuits and jacquarded onto a suit, formal coat, and a souvenir LV Keepall. His works used bright colors and a childlike style.
The connection lies in the fact that Abloh has always emphasized the significance of looking back on one’s childhood and valuing the child that still resides within them as a sign of hope. And as it turned out, that was the cliché that was conjured up again in the set for this performance, which consisted of rooms in a house in which a child had grown up to be an adult.
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During Rosalia’s performance, the audience could see models standing behind her searching through a Louis Vuitton trunk for stowed away children’s playthings. The program notes provided extensive information regarding the concept of rites of passage for millennials, teenage bedrooms, and early memories of playing video games.
When the models emerged onto the runway at the perimeter of the set, they were dressed in mishmashes of classical shapes, suits with twisted middles, and several long slender tailored coats because it is the trend of the season. Faces patchworked in leather in neutral hues were included as part of Dillane’s contribution to the LV monogram casual wear collection, which also comprised backpacks and a bucket hat.
It was difficult to read as a coherent narrative due to the collective aspect of the program, which included some of this, some of that, as well as a large number of specific objects to discuss about. Above and beyond that, there was little question about the maison’s exceptional capability to create procedures that were wildly sumptuous.
It is yet unknown what the subsequent steps will be for LV. It appeared that Dillane’s graffiti, which was written in yellow on a topcoat that was gray, was trying to suggest that: “Blurry Vision of a Bright Future.”
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