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 Post subject: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 27 Sep 2013, 08:12 
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Spring 2014

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*more to come later*

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SEPTEMBER 26, 2013
PARIS
By Tim Blanks

Rick Owens thinks of himself as the classic American in Paris, mesmerized by the culture that surrounds him. So he wanted to give something back with his new collection, something from his world. But there was no way that Parisians—or anyone anywhere, for that matter—could be prepared for what Rick gave today.

For inspiration, he looked to stepping, the hybrid of step dancing, cheerleading, and military drill that is as competitive as cheerleading in African-American colleges. For the past five months, Owens and his people worked with stepping teams from four sororities—Washington Divas, Soul Steppers, Momentum, and Zetas—to produce a performance that was as spectacularly synchronized and spotlighted as a Busby Berkeley celluloid set piece from the golden age of Hollywood.

Forty dancers—features set in a scowl steppers call "grit face," intended to intimidate the competition—pounded the catwalk in outfits that transfigured Owens' signature wrapped, draped tropes. These women needed to move. The clothes were adjusted accordingly, hiked, laced, slit, zipped to allow maximum motion. It was a revelation to see Owens' clothes so transformed: immediate electricity rather than the monumental serenity that has pervaded his womenswear of late. If he's always wanted to create clothes that were, as he said, "a cross of elegance and roughness," this was the time and place he made that happen. In his hands, the notion of extreme sportswear became something as gorgeously unlikely as the NBA in Vionnet. And that was some kind of vision.

More than that, it was bliss to experience Rick's joyous assault on fashion orthodoxy. "We're rejecting conventional beauty, creating our own beauty," he said. He's acutely aware of the accusations of cultishness that are leveled against his clothes, but all those body types today added up to as inclusive a catwalk vision of womanhood as we're ever likely to see. Such a gentle notion, and yet it struck home with a sledgehammer force. Sure, the breathtaking presentation counted for a lot, but it got its overwhelmingly timely weight from the culture of denial and exclusion that is currently eroding American politics.

http://www.style.com/fashionshows/review/S2014RTW-ROWENS


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 27 Sep 2013, 08:16 
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When Lumina and I started a discussion on sz a while ago about the female models and the ideal of beauty in fashion design, this is precisely what was missing as an appropriate challenge. Clothes designed for, and presented by women who look differently from a stereotypical fashion model.


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 27 Sep 2013, 10:31 
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Thank you for the thread!
Was thinking about putting one up since all other fashion mediums are getting caught up in really stupid ideas/arguments.

i think to start this off...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fYYYymWvhAI
i think this is a pretty direct translation, admittedly i didn't make the connection but am very grateful for it.

not to detail the thread but i don't enjoy discussing this sort of 'women and their place in design', i hope a slight detour (?) won't be too detrimental.

Evidently the starting sequence is quite similar to that of Gumboot dancing but perhaps with a more disciplined take, maybe just a 'rick owens' twist though.
Then it indulges in a dance sequence (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gumboot_dance)
'there was strictly no talking otherwise they would get punished by their boss.'
i think this might be an important idea in regards to diverging from 'the path', maybe in relation to the 'fashion' industry.
i'm sure we all know that Rick Owens is financially independent so I think his commentary on these kind of commercial empires is very interesting. the show kind really hit on this idea throughout (larger models, eccentric dancing, emphasis on performance opposed to cloth display) but i think there's more to it.
the shows definitely touches on the disregard of convention. i think a lot of people will say (and have said) that the pieces don't fit or they're ridiculous or s/t similar which i think is quite asinine. it'd be very difficult to gauge anything about the product given the performance, even though i don't think anything 'didn't fit' and that even seeing that argument kind've demonstrates a lack of understanding for rick's work.
There's the team separation where everyone is otherwise the same in action and image but the presentation is segregated. i made the link with sort of break dancing groups battling etc etc but perhaps rather gumboot dancing groups battling. As one team dances, the other observes - adds to the dance - in the end they come together in a sort of vigorous sway celebration.

there's really so much to be said about this collection and what it means in regards to his previous work.

in then it might just be rick having a laugh - definitely wouldn't be his first time and i would still love him for it!
thank u rik


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 27 Sep 2013, 14:06 
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oh man, isn't funny how the huffington post called this collection diverse?? Its as diverse as any other designer's work, its like how all the girls are usually tall, skinny, blonde and white except for the token black girl, but here its reversed and flipped over, this isn't diverse at all! But I certainly don't think diversity is "good"- a gang like this is no multi-cultured yogurt advertisement (see my pun there?), none of this inoffensive smiling muppet stuff

I would hate for this collection be called "diverse" in the plight of political correctness, over-sensitive self-aware ignorance, to plaster its banner all over whatever subtleties could have been afforded

phpBB [video]


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 27 Sep 2013, 22:24 
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good point, hlee, and an appropriate video for it :D

ternlef, i really like your interpretation. first, i just want to say that i agree it would be completely beside the point if this collection were to be reduced to the choice of models and a possible message that comes, isolated, from that angle. the presentation seems to be here a part of the collection, and the diverging from the mainstream path you mention is present both in the clothes and the presentation. and this "form-content analogy" is what makes the collection so great. to say that the clothes are made in larger sizes only to fit the models would be to miss the point of the collection in whole, and speak from the perspective of some "ideal fit" which is exactly what's being challenged here (as an idea in fashion in general, not only with respect to models alone).
and just to say (something we've discussed in another thread on here) i don't think the "intended interpretation of the author" (what the artist actually wanted to say) matters that much here. we are there to interpret it, and the context should give us all the required elements. interviews with designers shouldn't be a necessary requirement for that.


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 29 Sep 2013, 05:06 
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It may not be racially diverse, but in terms of body shapes it's far more diverse than can be said for any other major women's catwalks we've ever seen. Besides I don't think Rick meant for it to be a social commentary more than highlighting a niche subculture, which in this case happens to involve black women more than any other racial groups. But what do I know right, I'm not Rick.

I'm just saddened by all the body-policing going around the interwebs.


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 29 Sep 2013, 11:50 
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Rosenrot wrote:
But what do I know right, I'm not Rick.


This is why I said that interpreting and highlighting various aspects of this show shouldn't depend on the author's intention. Artists aren't necessarily reflected about their work. That's the job of the audience. The fact the show belongs to a certain social/cultural context should give us enough interpretive steam. And from that perspective it's clear that the show breaks with certain cliches in fashion industry. Was that Rick Owen's intention? Who cares. Its relevance isn't undermined if it wasn't.

But it is also important to keep in mind that if we were to interpret this collection merely as a an attempt at presenting clothes for a non-stereotypical model body type, we would fail to take the collection in whole. I mean, that's the cheapest way to approach it.


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 13 Oct 2013, 08:49 
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Just saw the video of the show. I don't know what there's to analyse here. The message is as simple as it is loud.

I'm a bit skeptical though. Not about the clothes, since as Rilu pointed out there's no way they can be detached from the performance : they obviously have been designed in that perspective, and it works wonders.

If you see it as a critic of the fashion stereotypes, it quickly finds its limits : one stereotype can't replace the other. But as a celebration, as the affirmation of a personal aesthetics, it certainly looks great.


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 14 Oct 2013, 01:38 
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^ there was a lot more to say in response to people who drew some pretty batshit conclusions from it (cultural appropriation, minstrelism, benign racism, and other ridiculousness) than there was to say about it (rick owens did it again best show of the season thank you rick)

http://iheartthreadbared.wordpress.com/ ... just-stop/

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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 14 Oct 2013, 04:30 
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batshit? no, all the commentary seems straightforward... if you use black models you're racist, if you use white models you're racist, and if you use a mix of black and white models you're racist. easy peasy!

edit: i'll post an example, quoted from the above article: "So how do we know racism or exploitation when we see it? (Hint: they are usually conjoined.) A quick and handy litmus test is one in which the following two questions are answered positively. Does one party benefit, not just more but disproportionately more, from the multicultural event than the other participating party? Does this relation of benefits mirror and repeat the prevailing social relations that already structure dominant society? If the answer to both questions is “yes” then it is a pretty good bet that the multicultural event is racially exploitative."

the writer says that these criteria pertain to multicultural events, thereby implying that they do not pertain to, um, unicultural (???) events. so, she's saying that when whites take advantage of whites in exactly the same situation, it's somehow less exploitative. so, she's saying these black dancers were victims of exploitation exclusively due to their blackness. so, she's racist, too! and there are plenty of good reasons i'm racist for writing this. we're all racist. hooray!

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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 14 Oct 2013, 16:28 
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We won't go anywhere taking this route, I'm afraid, as you clearly demonstrate it.

It is certainly a Rick show. I'm not a fan, but there's nothing here that wouldn't fit in his usual imagery - street warriors, religious connotations, dynamic presentation (I remember his male models almost running to the sound of an aggressive beat a few seasons ago, which wasn't making much of a difference regarding what you could catch from what they were wearing).
It is certainly a women collection, playing with the traditional vocabulary of female garments : drapes, frills, reversed oversized cols claudine... The nature of the presentation naturally reduced the spectrum of the cuts displayed, but you can still see enough diversity when taking a closer look at the clothes, which is, I agree, not the first thing that comes into mind when watching the video.

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So, this is a collection ; it can't be reduced to a statement directed against the industry, nor to a tribute to step. I don't see much of an ethnic/cultural component here, frankly, or at least it is not more pregnant than it was in his past works. For me it is just an aspect of the woman he wouldn't have been able to fully expose using the usual format of a runway show, another dimension of the sacred, less hieratic, more immediately brutal, awe-inspiring, and paradoxically joyfull.

And I think it turned out quite well.


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 10 Nov 2013, 05:40 
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Where's my fragrance? I want to smell like urine and wilting flowers, like a punk rock Chanel no 5

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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 11 Nov 2013, 05:20 
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he added a few mens pieces to the S/S 2002 collection officially for the first time. instead of selling certain womens pieces in larger sizes as unisex items which they had been doing before that.

"fantasy is unnecessary to men. I'd like to avoid these two images...feminine man and dandy man in regard to menswear. I don't like them. my definition of mens clothes is simple, masculine, and functional, like army surplus."

from 2002, early summmer, tokyo


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Last edited by crouka on 11 Nov 2013, 08:45, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 11 Nov 2013, 05:26 
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F/W 2002 dissolving menswear triptych


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 11 Nov 2013, 05:38 
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his residence-cum-studio/office in los angeles, 2003 january
at that point, six years had passed since his removal to the space. the atelier team consisted of three from day one there. he as the designer cum patternmaker and the assistant designer daphne and the sample maker richard.
there was no kitchen because as you know les deux cafes was available within a stone's throw.
it seems that when they were working the small television was always left on (for the knowledge of what's going on around the world) with classical music played as BGM.
he was going to stay there as he wanted to keep separated from NY and paris, again at that point.


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 11 Nov 2013, 06:16 
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the kitchen dining space


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 11 Nov 2013, 07:36 
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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 11 Nov 2013, 07:44 
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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 11 Nov 2013, 07:56 
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his closet
on the wall the painting he did in his school days and the photo of michele and his adopted daughter


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 Post subject: Re: Rick Owens
PostPosted: 11 Nov 2013, 08:03 
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