Mary Katrantzou takes her mastery of prints to new heights for her Fall/Winter 2013 collection, and the results are nothing short of astonishing. The first look, a glimmering, oddly arranged sweater in black and pewter seems like a strange starting point for this iridescent collection, but it is the origami folds of the sweater that signal what will become Katrantzou’s central thesis: a new direction for tailoring and structure. Her curving, bell-shaped frocks are a thing of yesteryear, and though we are reluctant to see them go, this collection more than upholds our expectations for Katrantzou’s brand of excellence.
To whit, she manages so deftly to fold and manipulate sturdy silks into shapes that defy logic. A gown folds around the body like the funnel of a cyclone, while another billows and blooms as if it were a living creature. This structured technique acts as a framework for gallery-worthy photographic prints that range from film noir-like stills to shots of a dogwood tree under the moonlight. Her inky blacks bleed onto snowy backgrounds that are sometimes colored in oily hues, like slices of ancient shale. One black-and-white dress features a crisscrossing latticework of diamond shapes that are reminiscent of looking up at the suspension wire of the Golden Gate Bridge at night. One black leather dress is etched with what looks like alien hieroglyphics. So intricate and breathtakingly executed are these looks that they come across as couture quality rather than ready-to-wear. In fact, they almost don’t look like clothes; they so thoroughly distort the human silhouette as to deserve another name. They are art pieces, or garment sculptures, or maybe just the dreamscape of Katrantzou’s mind come to life.
Photos: Courtesy of GoRunway