A uniform for those that aspire to impose a new iteration of Parisian cool. This is Hedi Slimane honing in on what a new generation of people are coming to Saint Laurent for. The perfect tuxedo jacket. The skinniest of black jeans. The cuban heel boot for the man who wants to be just that bit elevated. The biker jacket that lets you know what gang you’re part of. They’re the Slimane Saint Laurent codes that practically the entire front row of the brand’s aficionados were wearing. Every silhouette was angular, sharp and sometimes resplendent – not unlike the geometric structure which physically opened at the beginning of the show to reveal a maze glittering with LED lights, from which the specially casted group of musicians, creatives and models strode forward as elongated creatures of the night in noir. They’re either with the band or in the band. The girls were there to complete the picture as always, allowing the boys to ultimately shine – especially when they broke out in outré moments of showmanship like a bright pink fur coat, a skin tight guipure lace or sparkle net top. You’ve either got the panache to wear these clothes or you don’t. They intend to exclude and Slimane is defiantly unapologetic about that.
For the invitation book, Slimane collaborated with yet another Los Angeles based artist Oscar Tuazon, who fixates on what he calls “outlaw architecture”. The book depicted installations ridden with angles and sharp lines, much like what we saw on the catwalk. Its only bit of written word read: “An iced earth, an iced idea, cock on ice.” Icy, precise and ultimately unforgiving – that’s Slimane’s stance and there are no compromises to be made.
Paris is Burning:
Slimane might be based in Los Angeles but he hasn’t forgotten the spiritual home of Saint Laurent, nor where he cut his own design teeth. Hence, the name “Paris Sessions” given to the show, and to an accompanying series of photographs released recently, which Slimane shot in Los Angeles. The show and the photographs were Slimane’s tribute to Paris’s new wave. Bands like Junior, Grand Blanc, The Pirouettes and La Femme sat in the front row (on the floor and cross–legged of course) to watch a style in ode to them play out, complete with the French style motif the classic beret, adorned with band pins. It’s a reclaiming of Paris, echoed by the specially composed track called “Me Sieve” by the band Mystere. “Follow Me” is the translation. After the finale gang walk, you’d be hard pressed not to want to follow them to wherever their party’s at.