Art, exotic travel color menswear at Paris Fashion Week

Staff Writer
Columbus Monthly

PARIS (AP) — Art, fashion and exotic travel merged in Thursday's energetic installment of Paris' spring-summer 2016 menswear shows. Here are the highlights, including show reports from Louis Vuitton, Rick Owens and Issey Miyake.



Louis Vuitton seems to have clocked up the most air miles this season, and not just because of its jet set front row — Kanye West, Joe Jonas, Marianne Faithfull and Zayn Malik.

Designer Kim Jones traveled around the world in his indigo-rich show, merging styles as diverse Thai tribal dress, South East Asian national costumes, American Ivy League prep and U.S. baseball.

"Now, the world traveler picks things up wherever he goes and makes them his own," Jones said.

The fashion house paid real attention to details. A satin sweatshirt featured Asiatic embroidered cranes, track pants and boxers came in embroidered silk, high-waisted '50s pants were made from blue-gray mohair and silk, and sun-dried Kobi leathers were cut to the shape of American flight jackets.

This merging of East-meets-West was a shimmering, silky success.



Designer Rick Owens made a statement against war, and in the process, produced a stellar spring-summer show that subverted U.S. military collars with his signature dash of madness.

Taking studded jackets with plackets from the days of the Vietnam War, the U.S. designer created aggressive-looking slim fitting jerkins in distressed gray-and-black with white trim that were paired with black military boots and bare legs.

The collection, Owens said, was about "rebellion, counterculture and the anti-war protest."

The hippy, anti-war protester was referenced with huge messy wigs in green, orange and white that enveloped models' heads. Was he trying to suggest tunnel vision?

Whatever the meaning, it produced some great looks — like long, sheer sleeveless tops made from transparent, waxed leather. The collection finished in signature flamboyance in a series of "turbo-draped" toga tops, one with a huge gold flash.



A male model known as Jera created a protest of his own at Owen's show, holding up a handwritten banner that read: "Please Kill Angela Merkel — Not."

It's unclear if this was a reference to Greek debt negotiations.

Owens told media that he punched the model backstage for making the unauthorized political statement.



In the tropical gardens of the Quai Branly museum in Paris, Issey Miyake ventured on a brightly colored exploration of the collision between nature and urban life.

Prints, inspired by Japanese photographer Yoshinori Mizutani, captured the wild parrots that can be seen on Tokyo's streets. They were vibrant features on slim Jacquard suits, or cut up into strips in loose knit sweaters.

Then the spring-summer designs evoked the color-blocking of late Mexican architect Luis Barragan, famed for his vibrant square designs. It produced some of the show's best and boldest looks — bright yellow socks and a voluminous blue truncated apron.

The designer hit only one discordant note: his tight cotton neckties appeared contrived and didn't quite gel with the styles.


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