SPRING MENSWEAR: GIVENCHY

by Jeremy Danté

PARIS – not many labels can surpass the obsession that we fashion kids & more recently, the hip-hop community- has with givenchy. for decades, the house of givenchy has been tied to some of hollywood’s biggest & brightest icons. while audrey hepburn might differ completely & totally from kanye west- the level of visibility that the french label has recieved in these modern times is unprecendented. every season, as a reflex, i kind of shutter at the fact that so many unaware clamor over the sight or mention of anything givenchy. while im all for conversations on fashion, im not one for hype- especially when it comes with a false sense of awareness. you can’t scroll on your dashboard on tumblr without seeing some random hypester on the east coast posting givenchy runway images from four seasons ago, praising the craftsmanship or design concept like it’s new. im all for timeliness- especially in the confines of fashion. who wants to be late? ever? while i am very about creating ones own lane, or creating your own rules- i am also very aware of certain behaviors being excepted or not excepted in certain circles. im not afraid to admit my own social awareness, but in fashion- you’re either in real time, ahead of time or behind. this, i know. circling old collections for new inspiration & then glorifying it as new is definitely not the thing to do when concerning fashion or how to translate style.

this concept of being ahead of time is perfect when considering the trend relevance of the house of givenchy. through exploration of trend, i have come to notice that very few labels actually set these trends. while many follow guidelines discussed by fashion councils, only a few labels in fashion today actually spark interest amongst style culture- which then creates a buzz leading to a mass of retail reinterpretations at every price point from thousands of dollars all the way down to dollar bins at discount stores- the house of givenchy has set many trends in the last five years, effortlessly. well, maybe effortlessly is not the right choice of word, as im sure the work of tisci could not easily be imitated by many of us. ricardo’s work at givenchy is truly remarkable & as much as i want to believe that this fashion house does not live up to it’s hype; every season, it does. described after the show by jean-paul gode as “vatican chic”, the spring 2013 menswear collection at givenchy was inspired by both sex & religion. it was sensual, outspoken & beautiful. delicate where needed & dark where necessary. most stunning were the collections prints, which hosted a range of religious imagery. one of the collections images was particularly striking, granted my upbringing as a catholic.

there is a story in the bible that speaks of an incident during jesus’ resurrection, when a woman- said to be saint veronica of jerusalem, wiped jesus’ sweat from his face with her veil & his face remained imprinted on the veil. the images of a slightly painted face remind me of that story. i love tisci’s use of religion in contrast with sensuality & at moments, darkness. i feel that there is no greater cultural curiosity than that of religion. tisci represents, reflects & introduces fashion audiences to this level of curiousity & explores it rather than exploiting it. while not terribly visible in the images of this post, some of the collections bomber jackets are  very softly printed with ghostly images of what appear to be the virgin mary. while the collection is subtle in it’s use of silhouette & the concepts are kept clean- the use of print & what the collection represents makes this collection truly a work of art. ricardo tisci continues to defy the odds by raising the bar for himself & the house of givenchy. with couture on it’s way, im sure that tisci’s genius will only continue to shine into show season, where both couture & womens ready-to-wear await us. another incredible collection that surpasses what can be considered style & instead becomes labeled, art. [source]

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