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Louis Vuitton Womenswear SS13

Marc Jacobs checks out with an impressive display of graphic verve

The columns and checks of artist Daniel Buren that are ensconced inside the prestigious Palais Royale were the starting point for Marc Jacobs that gave way to both the set at Louis Vuitton as well as the collection. We were transformed into another dreamscape conceived by Buren himself where yellow lights dotted twinkled over a giant yellow checkerboard with the central focal point of four escalators. Linear, ever so slightly severe and definitely surreal – this would be the setting for Jacobs to complete his graphic journey from the stripes of his own collection to the checks here that dominated the Louis Vuitton collection. The check of course is a cornerstone of Louis Vuitton’s heritage with the Damier check, invented and patented in 1888 by Monsieur Vuitton. The check was bought bang up to date when rendered in yellow, olive, beige and grey sixties Mod-ish silhouettes. Models descending down the escalators in Diane Arbus-inspired pairs, looking like robotic dolls, contributed to the dazzling effect of this check overload. Dresses and skirts would either be the shortest of short, knee length pencil fit or floor length and column-esque. Like his own label’s show, the midriff became a focal point as tops would be cropped, skirts would be worn low on the hips and jackets came buttoned up at on point, revealing a band of flesh; a frission of latent sexiness. The way the check was handled on different surfaces – be it sequins, flocking, sheeny satin or crisp cotton – was part of Jacobs' deliberately simplistic investigation of this pattern. When the check wasn't employed a stray graphic floral appeared looking sharp, echoing the season's penchant for restrained femininity. Pair after pair, the twinned models would descend each one drumming into you, that the repetition of an idea was an effective exercise. By the end you were hypnotized by Jacobs' audacity and vision of scale.