KENZO FRIENDS AND FAMILY AT THE FALL/WINTER 2015 MEN'S SHOW
Once again our friends and families were in Philarmonie de Paris to support us and the Fall/Winter men's collection!
Discover our best shots of Caroline Issa, Pierpaolo Ferrari and Maurizio Catelan, Kenzo Takada, Sarah Endelman, Edison Chen, Verbal and Yoon!
BACKSTAGE AT OUR FALL/WINTER 2015 MENS SHOW
A little backstage tour with our favourite make up artist Aaron de Mey and hair desser Anthony Turner preparing our models for the show!
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Once again our friends supported KENZO yesterday morning at the freshly inaugurated Philarmonie de Paris where Carol Lim and Humberto Leon presented their Fall/Winter 2015 men's show for KENZO. Joining their teams of the season in fun duels, they carried OUI vs NON signs or supported the Eiffel Tower vs the Statue of Liberty, showing love to Paris or New York, a perfect illustration of our Spring/Summer 2015 collection.
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MENSWEAR FALL/WINTER 2015: earthly colors, flashes of fluorescent orange and silver
The show was held in the freshly inaugurated Philarmonie de Paris, architect Jean Nouvel’s jagged almuninum starship concert hall on the city’s northeastern edge in the Parc de la Villette cultural center. For the Fall/Winter 2015 menswear collection, Carol Lim and Humberto Leon mixed technical fabrics and urban sport shape layering in an earthy rainbow of colors shot with flashes of fluorescent orange and silver.
Hybrid combinations of tailoring and sport characterize this collection. The reefer slim coat with hood in military olive tech fabric shaped with black piping and patch pocket sleeves that opened the show is a case in point; it looks like a wet suit transformed into urbanwear. Sleeve cuffs with thumb holes, a functional detail taken from motorcycle racing jackets, show throughout the on coats, jackets and sweaters. Slim trousers in military olive or burgundy tech fabric are topped by great tunic sweaters in multicolor space dye knits or spliced, ikat-style stripes with thumb holes cuffs. Underneath the layered olive outerwear there’s fluorescent orange and black acid wash style jean jackets and stovepipe jeans.
Pattern runs throughout this collection on great satin parka coats spliced with black bands, in all over chalk on blackboard style doodles and big, fuzzy block lettering on knits and complex tech pattern intarsias. These patterns are piled one on top of another in jackets, sweaters and shirts in a seemingly haphazard fashion that creates a choatic symphony of color and form.
Jumpsuits are roomy styled like outerwear blousons with contrast colored yokes, or in chaotic pattern knit. And there’s is a psychedelic feeling in tie-dye splatter-colored fur, which shows up in collars on satin tech blousons and allover in one scoop-neck jacket.
Everything in this collection is designed to be layered and the piled-on look is accentuated with trompe-l’œil blouson-over-coat and multiple stripey sleeve constructions, which bring a muted rainbow of color to each look.
Bonded crinkled silver tech fabric with fluorescent orange satin for big jackets gives a cartoon super hero drama to big anoraks and big parkas. And contrast-colored oversized stitching shows throughout on sweater stripes and bicolored leather sneakers as though the clothes have been taken apart and roughly stitched back together.
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THERE IS NO PLANET B AT THE KENZO SPRING/SUMMER 2015 SHOW
As we stepped inside the skate park in a far out northern suburb of Paris, it was all too easy to think that Carol Lim and Humberto Leon would be defaulting to sub-culture and go hard on skate. Instead, the skate park with its undulating concrete waves and steps provided the perfect blank canvas for huge LED screens to be erected.
On the screens, with a background of gradiated neon colours we saw a curious face tilting her head towards us, as she spoke. “Welcome to Kenzo SS15. KENZO would like to remind you there is no planet B. Please protect what is precious.” Her name was Knola (all-knowing, all seeing?) and she is a real person despite the avatar appearance. Somewhere backstage, someone mysterious was making all of those facial expressions and movements come to life. She’s quintilingual and a global citizen, and as her voice vaulted from English to Chinese to Japanese to French to Arabic, we realised it mirrored the way we live our 21st century lives today, traveling from one place to another in what feels like a much smaller world. It also reflected how Lim and Leon are themselves global citizens, splitting their work between New York and Paris, traveling to other cities in between for KENZO and Opening Ceremony and now both with kids, their thoughts turned to the future - a positive one at that. “We were really into this optimism for the future,” said Leon after the show. “It's a future that's very close to us, not a space age future. We wanted to think about what that meant. We're definitely embracing technology and looking what is our vision for the future - cleanliness, purity, the right energy and about being responsible.” Carol further pondered: "How do we play our part in this?”
For Lim and Leon’s part, they decided to imbue KENZO SS15 collection with a free-your-mind attitude as they looked towards the future. We whizzed through flashes of New York, Tokyo, a Californian wave and sunsets on the screens accompanied by Disclosure’s special soundtrack mix, which included the breakout track White Noise. How would Knola dress? She might be KENZO’s avatar but she’s also an appropriate vision for humanity in the future as we speed towards a world where physical boundaries, ethnic background and language barriers become irrelevant. We might all be like Knolas in the future.
Every silhouette swooshed and moved as the Knolas of our times get kitted out in giant skate trousers and giant zip-up jackets. She’s not a skater girl as we know her. Aerated mesh and geometric lace in the brightest of whites were cut into elongated shirts and trumpet skirts, mimicking air streams in the sky. Technical knits and pinstriping drew lines on the body in relaxed athletic-inspired silhouettes. There was a chill-down raver vibe when we saw the looks were accessorised with organic moulded leather kitten heels and pool slides with naturalistic cut-outs, rubber handled net bags and sci-fi cyborg sunglasses. Optimistic abstract prints in pastel pinks and blues, highlighted the euphoric element in the collection. They emerged on oversized shirts and wide and loose trousers with side splits and mesh vests and swinging skirts. The final effect as models took their positions next to the Knola on the screen was an uplifting vision for the future. Machine, hand-made craftsmanship (as seen in the fabrics) and freedom in what we do or wear, standing side by side in solidarity.
On the screens, in between flashes of cityscapes, you could also see the movement of machinery. We’ve been conditioned in the last century to fear dystopian futures where machines take over our lives. But what if it doesn’t have to be this way? Lim and Leon are enthusiastic embracers of technology and they expressed that solidly with this collection and show set-up. It’s a refreshing change up from the usual doom and gloom about what dark places social media and technology are taking us. They’re looking forward, not by dwelling on the past but reacting to what’s going on around them.
NATURALLY PLAYFUL / NATURALLY KENZO
KENZO's Creative Directors, Carol Lim and Humberto Leon, have united with evian to convey their graphic intimate vision for a unique one-of-a-kind bottle. The mysterious and strange oeuvre of artist and director David Lynch influenced the KENZO Fall/Winter 2014 collection for men and women and it is in this vein that the bottle's motif features a broken floor pattern, toying with the idea of shifting the elements.
Offering a magnifying glass effect when full, the bottle's purple fragmented pattern is penetrated by a sole lime zig-zag, giving the holder a distorted and skewed view of its ultra-pure contents.
Born in the purity of the Alps, dressed with a twisted spirit, the bottle embodies a naturally playful energy: a theme that united the two brands.
The evian + KENZO bottle will be available in two sizes (75 cl and 33 cl), and this year takes the Limited Edition to a PET range. Available worldwide in selected restaurants and retailers from October 2014.
The KENZO men's Spring/Summer 2015 collection
Anders Christian Madsen reviews the KENZO men's Spring/Summer show.
"Paris, je t’aime". Carol Lim and Humberto Leon are in love with the French capital, and for the KENZO spring/summer 2015 men’s show they thought they’d share it with their guests from around the world. Celebrities, editors, buyers, and family drove in procession through rainy Paris to Pont Alexandre III – the gilded bridge by the Grand Palais – where they were shown down to the riverbank. A canary yellow platform with matching benches had been erected on the quai below the bridge, the Eiffel Tower looming in the horizon.
Transparent KENZO umbrellas were passed around to guests and eventually created a mushroomed roof over the yellow platform, while black-clad team members wiped the rain off the runway with giant orange mops; a pretty amazing graphic effect.
On soundtrack duty, electronic duo Disclosure – Kenzo’s newest collaborators – opened the show with Giulio Franceschelli’s throbbing Loijy. It played for a while, seemingly with no runway action, before collective gasps suddenly went around the rows. In one ceremonious line, models were seen walking across Pont Alexandre III, the bright pastels of the collection lighting up in the rain. As they made their way to the stairs and the riverbank, each boy walked a round on the runway platform before disappearing back up the stairs onto the bridge. It was epic to say the least, and the pumping beat of Disclosure’s own When a Fire Starts to Burn, which played during the finale, only made the moment more powerful.
“I loved giving the Eiffel Tower to the guests,” Humberto said backstage, hosting the show solo due to Carol’s pregnancy. “Every time you’re here it’s so exciting to be able to see it, but sometimes you miss it so I thought, ‘You know what? This season I really want everybody to have the opportunity to see the Eiffel Tower.’” Inspired by the designer duo’s first visit to Paris and the way Parisians dress, the collection featured symbolic Parisian images such as the replica of the Statue of Liberty – also a nod to Carol and Humberto’s homeland – and the words ‘KENZO PARIS’ emblazoned across the back of jackets. “I wanted something that was really quintessentially beautiful. The macaron pinks, blues greens to me are just gorgeous, gorgeous colours,” Humberto said.
With guests like Alex Kapranos and Paul Thomson from Franz Ferdinand, Joe Jonas, Woodkid, and Jesse Metcalfe in the front row, and actor Theo Cholbi walking the final look, the show gave international visitors all the essence of Paris that Humberto had hoped for. Graphic dot patterns and stripes paid tribute to the eccentricity of the Parisian dresser while the neatness of chinos and snug jumpers in dusty pastels portrayed the pristine nature of Parisian men. “The Parisian guys are always in business suits, and then they get on their Vespas in a parka, and I love that idea,” Humberto said, referring to the motocross details that appeared throughout the collection.
“It’s now my third year here and I approached Paris for this collection with a really fresh eye. I was thinking of what Kenzo Takada might have thought when he first arrived in Paris in 1969,” Humberto said of KENZO’s founder, who was in attendance at the show. “So this collection was really about me re-living my first trip to Paris, re-experiencing everything that I love about it,” he noted. (The show invitation was even comprised of a ring of mini Eiffel Tower trinkets for everyone to keep.) From the dramatically cloudy Parisian sky acting as a natural backdrop for the show to the dome of the Grand Palais towering over the statues on the bridge, Paris couldn’t have looked better for its big KENZO tribute. Because this is the thing about Paris: even when it’s wet it looks hot.
See the KENZO Spring/Summer 2015 collection here.
Last night, KENZO friends and family were celebrating the Fall/Winter 2014 women's show at the Rex Club.
The Misshapes, Yu Masui, Cedric Rivrain, Michael Mayren, Rila Fukushima, Nicolas Gaudin, Pierpaolo Ferrari, Jonathan Friedman, Justin Wu, Kiddy Smile, Pablo Olea, Yvan Rodic, Jessica Alba, Clara 3000, André, Mademoiselle Yulia, Olympia le Tan or Mary Faline to name a few enjoyed a pop and house set by Dactylo with Carol and Humberto, followed by Jungle duo and a live by Katy B!
THE GRAND FINALE
Carol and Humberto mined the wondrous work and world of David Lynch for the last two KENZO collections (men’s and pre-Fall) and their infatuation reached a climatic point today at the woman’s Fall/Winter 2014 presentation in Paris. For the grand finale in this cinematic trilogy the duo actually worked with the iconic director himself on the soundtrack, mood, and set design, which included a giant sculpture that dramatically flickered at the end of the runway. “This was always our plan to work with him on the finale, on the ending,” said Humberto excitedly post show.
From the cloak and dagger dark curtained venue, to the maze-like configuration of the catwalk, and the driving kick-drum beat on the soundtrack, Lynch’s touch was distinctly present at every moment. Even the candied popcorn served to guests seemed like a nod to his obsession with Americana. “He really designed the entire thing,” said Humberto. “Including the mirrors, the configuration of the runway, even the way the girls walked… it was meant to feel like they were getting lost.”
Although Lynch’s oeuvre is both varied and extensive, this marks his first foray into the world of fashion shows. “He’s never worked on a fashion show so I think he was really intrigued about the process,” said Carol.
As for the garments, the duo set out to create a collection “though the eyes of David Lynch,” — a wardrobe for the modern Lynchian heroine. Silhouettes and, as ever with Kenzo, prints were the focal points of this collection with the former explored as never before. Volumes were exaggerated and then contrasted to great effect: lean tailored looks were styled with buoyant circle skirts that sat on the waist, fitted bodices had peplums, and sharp tailored suits that should have been slim were made in quilted down. Nothing was as it seemed.
The “tool creatures” first seen in the men’s Fall/Winter 2014 collection reappeared in both print and as embroidered motifs, and other prints were drawn directly from Lynch’s universe — reflections of shattered mountain ranges appeared in acid yellow and a herring-bone flooring pattern was pushed to almost a psychedelic effect.
KENZO regulars Leigh Lezark, Jessica Alba and Mademoiselle Yulia sat front row drawing up their shopping lists — those pochettes inscribed with the words “Forever, no?” will certainly be at the top — and although Lynch couldn't be there another important luminary was present. Founder Mr Kenzo Takada, put in an appearance to show his continued support for the new team. “We really design with him in mind, so it’s nice to see him being excited about what we are doing,” commented Humberto backstage.
Our best KENZO ambassadors this morning in front of La Cité de la Mode in Paris... A joyful mix of Eyes and tigers from last season and fish and waves from this one!