Paris-based designer Rick Owens has been talked about a lot in his long career. An anti-hero, a goth, fashion’s “Prince of Darkness.” She’s been labeled as such largely because of her penchant for noir, gray and snow-covered oeuvre, deploying pentagram motifs on underwear or elk antlers on furniture, and has an overall aesthetic – and she agrees. Will be – enthusiastically anti-establishment.
“I get it, I mean, it’s easy to categorize someone. I also summarize things quickly. I think being called a goth isn’t the worst thing,” he said two days earlier atop the Palais de Tokyo. says during an interview. Unveiling her Spring-Summer 2022 collection at Paris Fashion Week. “It’s like this: there’s Disney World, where you can go to find something really neat and that denies the inconveniences and horrors that really exist in life. And there’s non-Disney World, where you’ll find someone like me. will find the person, who accepts and tries to figure out how to accept those things and how to manage those things. When you accept that, when you deal with mortality, when You deal with danger, so, yeah, it’s darker than Disney. I’m okay with that.”
Michelle Lamy and Rick Owens attend the Gareth Pugh show as part of Paris Fashion Week Womenswear in 2014. Credit: Michel Dufour / WireImage / Getty Images
People want to imagine that everything is going to be okay, and that we’ve got everything under control.
On top of all that, Owens, who turns 60 in November, may be among the most unfiltered designers working today—a trait that’s rare, especially when many luxury brands heavily patrol corporate approval processes and security. Come under the stop. His honesty is refreshing: “I love bombing, yet being angry all the time. I grew up in such a conservative, just city, and it filled me with a lot of anger,” Owens says. “I’m still acting on that anger. It’s my revenge. I’m still vengeful. I’m still a vengeful Scorpio.”
During Paris Fashion Week in 2019, Owens’ show at the Palais de Tokyo blended harmoniously with a casual on-site exhibition by sculptor Thomas Housego. Credit: Victor Virgil/Gamma-Rafo/Getty Images
Owens’ product is insanely luxurious, but it doesn’t quite live up to the limits of stereotypical and run-of-the-mill opulence. Blistered leather, exotic skins, tape-thin cashmere knits, overwashed denim, and a bit of rough glamour, such as with the injection of sequins or foils, have all played a part in defining their eccentric designs in the vernacular. Their shapes and silhouettes are oversized, sticky, dull, and, frankly, captivating. It all comes together to create something futuristic and deeply original. Exotic than Neanderthals, and yet strangely adapted to the modern age.
“What I always try to do is bring autism into my work,” he says. “The fact is, throughout my life, I’ve tried to present something that’s an alternative to a very strict aesthetic that we see in this world. We’re expected to follow it, but I don’t want to stick to the lines. And not in a militant way, but in a way of saying, ‘I propose this as an alternative to the standards you’re used to.’ I think with confidence and a certain amount of flair and courage, we have established our own kind of beauty. A better beauty.”
Owens’ balanced approach—that fashion can thrive as a tug-of-war between sadness and joy—is also reflected in his track record of both controversy and truly spectacular strokes.
In 2013, Owens hired Step teams from US sororities to model his Spring-Summer 2014 collection. Credit: Catwalking / Getty Images
Regarding the former, in June 2015, a model walking Owens’ show held a sign that read “Please don’t kill Angela Merkel.” There was some speculation as to whether this was an inside job, a violent stunt to boost publicity (Owens denies any prior knowledge of it).
With the latter, there are two standouts in particular. One dates back to September 2013, when Owens hired teams to move from American sororities instead of traditional models to present their Spring–Summer 2014 collection. The show was a sensation, and, it’s worth noting, it happened years before the fashion industry’s systems-wide push for greater racial diversity and size inclusivity.
The new Spring-Summer 2022 Rick Owens Collection debuts at Paris Fashion Week 2021 on 30 September. Credit: Astrop / Getty
The second involves another runway show, this time in 2019. Owens has a history of furnishing at the Palais de Tokyo, and the venue’s sheer size regularly calls for creative space-filling.
That summer, there was an on-site exhibition of work by artist and sculptor Thomas Housegow. One such piece was smacked in the middle of Owens’ set. The designer put the idea aside, and imported clay from HouseGo’s Los Angeles studio, mixing it with Parisian clay, and incorporating it as part of the staging. Most importantly, it didn’t go to waste: “It’s clay that came from Los Angeles that was on the Rick Owens show that ended up in the Louvre, being used by the students in their creativity,” Owens says. “And I just loved that. I thought it was a great solution.” [the excesses of runway shows.]”
A line of models walk the runway during the Rick Owens fashion show at Paris Fashion Week 2021. Credit: Astrop / Getty
Spring-Summer 2022, titled ‘Fogchain’, featured a series of Owens signings; Standout looks included a dip-dyed long sheer top over a barely-there body suit and splint-like python boots, as well as a billowing, almost kaftan-like, tulle dress embroidered with iridescent raven feathers. Overall, the collection resonated with confidence and a kind of elegant-yet-dangerous energy; It was kind of a charged-up homecoming, but Owens doesn’t specify too many specific feelings for his work.
Plus, as always, he grapples with the big questions: “[With shows coming back after the pandemic]Everyone wants to flex. Everyone wants to show that they are stronger than ever, that they are more powerful than ever. It’s a little scary, but I get it. So that’s where my head is right now. I’m thinking, nobody wants to see meekness. No one wants to see a humble lesson. People want to see that we’re back in full power.” Then, smiling mischievously, he concludes: “People want to imagine that everything is going to be okay, and that we’ve got everything under control. have taken.”
Top image: Rick Owens at his menswear fall/winter 2020-2021 show at Paris Fashion Week in 2020.
Credit : www.cnn.com