At Pier 26, under the dusk of an urban skyline, Givenchy’s Riccardo Tisci set about his romantic ode to the city of New York.
By Christopher Prince
When the news broke that Givenchy would jump seas across the Atlantic Ocean to celebrate opening a flagship store in New York, rumours were already rife that this would be the show of the spring/summer 2016 season.
The collection was staged under the hallows of an open-air show space, designed in collaboration with Marina Abramovic, with recylced materials that reflected the spirit of a Brazilian favela (a shantytown of sorts). Despite a star-studded front row that included the likes of Kim Kardashian West and Kanye West, Julia Roberts (in a Riccardo Tisci portrait t-shirt), Jennifer Hudson, Ciara, Debbie Harry and Nicki Minaj (dressed head-to-toe in Givenchy leopard print), the show’s focus was on the solitary beams of light that projected from the Freedom Tower, in remembrance of 9/11.
A gargantuan 89 look collection in shades of black, white and grey, was first introduced by steadfast Givenchy muse, Mariacarla Boscono, dressed in slinky separates by virute of lace and satin. It was this direction which voiced Tisci’s lexicon for the season, inspired by the world of the boudoir in layers of transparent silks that laid bare the vulnerability of his Givenchy muse.
As with previous collections, Tisci wove in some impressive couture pieces alongside a mix of women’s and men’s ready-to-wear, and select items from his new Givenchy Denim line. During the opening sequence, the ease of silk and the cascade of lingerie-inspired lace, all voiced Tisci’s romantic mindset. But that mindset was elevated in the most couture-like of ways, as models arrived in jewelled masks conjured by Pat McGrath, wearing gowns of dégradé feathers and mosaic tiles, evocative of reptilian skin. Like last season, face bijoux took precedence.
The parrallels of both directions voiced a slouchy, yet entirely bespoke vision from the designer that will no doubt attract the sportswear-driven focus of the New York clientele.
Given the circumstances of the sombre date, and Tisci’s own fragile projection of his Givenchy muse, it seemed only appropriate that the show would close out to a lingering rendition of Ave Maria against the dimly-lit backdrop of the City that Never Sleeps.
Read our interview with Riccardo Tisci in the Septemer issue of MOJEH Magazine here. And see the collection through the lens of our New York photographer, Valentina Frugiuele, below.