Sunday, March 8, 2009

paris autumn/winter 2009 - nina ricci

olivier theyskens is to fashion what john keats is to poetry. both share a profound romanticism that wells with passion and emotions that transcends beyond its occupied medium. like the great romantic poets of the past, one feels that theyskens uses emotional intuition rather than intellectual rationalization to provoke some form of elevated aesthetic experience with his design. since he burst into the collective fashion consciousness over ten years ago, theyskens's highly romantic and gothic sensibility has won him fans such as madonna during her new age/spiritual phase, to eventually being universally lauded by the fashion community when he revived the dusty house of rochas and made him one of the most influential designers of the noughties. when the house was suddenly closed down, theyskens was immediately hired to revive another iconic french house, nina ricci. in the two years that he has been at ricci, the general opinion of his work has been, for lack of a better word, uneven. while his collections produced some of the most beautiful and ethereal creations we've seen in the past couple of years, as a whole it seemed to lack the coherence of his work at rochas. for his final collection for ricci, theyskens not only produced one of the strongest collection of his entire career, he also created his most commercial collection for the house. which is rather ironic considering that it was probably the criticisms he got for being too fantastical during his tenure that it was no longer understandable from a consumer point of view that was most likely the cost of him being let go. but instead of sabotaging next season and presenting an intentionally bad collection, theyskens instead bowed out gracefully and gave the nina ricci customer the practical based fantasy they've been waiting so long for. it reminded the world of the promise that this young designer is capable of fulfilling. that is translating all his grandiose romanticism into clothes that don't only exist in theatrical fashion editorials or runway presentations, but on the most emotional stage of all, reality.


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