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Spirit of Virgil Abloh lives in Louis Vuitton in Paris

PARIS – She may have died last November, but Virgil Abloh lived on Thursday at Paris Fashion Week on a spectacular high-energy catwalk for Louis Vuitton menswear. A black band gave a poignant performance at a surreal yellow brick installation inside the Louvre, while rapper Kendrick Lamar performed a live ode to American fashion star who was a designer of Vuitton menswear from 2018 until his death.

Here are some highlights from the spring-summer 2023 shows in Paris.

THE BAND OF ABLOH

“Long live Virgil … How many miles away?” it was Lamar’s live rap on the Vuitton show that was overwhelming. The yellow road that meandered around the Louvre’s oldest courtyard was reminiscent of the “Wizard of Oz” spirit and childhood obsessions common in Abloh’s designs, as well as a colorful band and dance group. including several members of the Florida band A&M University. which appeared loudly at the beginning and end of the program.

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This spring-summer show was the first presented since Abloh’s death that he had not designed (a previous posthumous one was based on his own creations). Thursday, on the other hand, was a collection designed entirely by the Vuitton studio in its spirit. This rare continuation on Vuitton of the aesthetics of a former designer is a strong sign of the level of influence that man has drawn.

Stars such as Omar Sy, Jessica Biel, Justin Timberlake, Joel Edgerton and Naomi Campbell have further demonstrated the influence of her legacy.

VUITTON STUDIO SHOW

It is a remarkable feat for a studio to emulate the styles of an old designer, with originality.

This was the case on Thursday’s display: from quirky cut-out shirt skirts in zigzag patterns, to 3D paper airplane appliques in outfits and elongated silhouettes from another world.

A finely crafted jacket with trompe l’oeil prints provided one of the many touches of old-school luxury. Such moments in this collection even seemed to surpass the designs of Abloh’s catwalks.

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They marked a careful line between the playful styles associated with the home since 2018 and the luxury clothing that was seen during the tenure of predecessor Kim Jones.

The strength of the screen was due to its many design feats. One example was the waistband of a black double-breasted jacket that had been pulled to look like a V on its side. His own silhouette evoked the monogram of the house.

The Louis Vuitton design studio has just broken the trend for many cooks to spoil the broth.

FASHION THAT CHALLENGES DEATH IN HOMME PLISSE ISSEY MIYAKE

Drawing the line between fashion and performance, Issey Miyake’s Japanese house for Homme Plisse used a group of acrobats who contorted, danced and apparently courted death for a spectacular Paris Fashion Week men’s show.

In eye-catching shades inspired by flowers and vases, the models mingled with artists within the newly renovated La Poste du Louvre for this unusual and sensitive showcase of fashion designs through dance.

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From a hidden ledge above the courtyard track, a dance group suddenly stood in the middle of the show in front of the audience’s cheering. With pastel-colored pleated garments, the performers descended the stairs, before performing jumps, falls, and falls that defied death. The performers were launched into the air as missiles, to be captured by the dancers in the courtyard. There was no safety net above the hard stone floor.

The show was directed by Rachid Ouramdane of the Théâtre National de Chaillot, with the participation of a group of acrobats, the Compagnie XY.

The fashion itself was soft in comparison. Gradual curves in the neck and abdomen mimicked the shapes of the vessels with a pleasant weight that produced a dynamic silhouette. A pleated tunic in pastel red was twinned with a short jacket, with chest panels that looked like an Asian warrior. Elsewhere, a vivid dandelion vest wore pockets with studs that unfolded like an opening flower.

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Color blocking was also a strong theme: pastel purple contrasting with blush and black raisins in one aspect, and in another pastel yellow and midnight blue. It was a strong return to the Homme Plisse catwalk at Issey Miyake.

THE ANCIENT EGYPT OF RICK OWENS

American designer Rick Owens delved into the ancient world in search of inspiration, returning from a stay in Egypt and a visit to the Edfu Temple on the Nile.

The philosopher Owens often said that his “personal concerns … felt petty in the face of that kind of timelessness.” In recent seasons he has commented on the impact the pandemic has had on fashion and beyond, and has accepted the blockade as a time for introspection.

Owens always had an aesthetic riff in the wardrobe of ancient Egypt, with gowns, curtains, and high priestess styles adorning her catwalks. But on Thursday’s show he uploaded the album for a very personal look at such silhouettes.

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“Lying on the ground with the Valley of the Kings in sight was a prospect I liked,” he said.

Like the long stone sculptures of the ancient temple, the silhouettes were lengthened by layers of clothing to lower the stomach. The dark flared trousers were so long that the fabric brushed the stone steps as the models walked around the grounds of the Palais de Tokyo. It created a funky surreal effect.

The “extreme shoulders”, giant and rounded, created this atmosphere of an Egyptian priest, tailor-made by the American fashion master in silk chiffon, crisp cotton and squeaky frames.

AMI

French designer Alexandre Mattiussi continued his penchant for using leading French actresses as model muses in Thursday night’s mixed show, which referred to the 1980s.

This spring season, the burst of celebrities came from “Amelie” and “Da Vinci Code” star Audrey Tautou, who opened the process with an oversized raw raincoat and warm white jeans.

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The rest of the show was defined by AMI’s usual fare of salable looks, such as oversized 80’s suit jackets and knee-length stripper boots.

Frames – argyle styles, vichy tartan – mixed with stripes – Breton, pin and sporty – to give a soft touch to the styles of bread and butter of Mattiussi.

Meanwhile, the plus size models were a welcome addition to the Paris catwalk and added a sense of inclusion.

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Spirit of Virgil Abloh lives in Louis Vuitton in Paris

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