It’s early days and Givenchy might have already swept Fashion Month for most impressive show. For the first time, the Parisian brand departed Paris Fashion Week for a pier in New York City, where an unbelievable, star-studded affair unfurled in front of thousands. Riccardo Tisci selected New York City to show in for Spring/Summer 2016 for two reasons. The first was related to the opening of Givenchy’s new flagship store on Madison Avenue, while the second reason was far more emotional. Tisci told press that America was the first country to really believe in his work at Givenchy, and this event was performed in gratitude. To increase the scale and spectacle of the brand’s first #NYFW show, Tisci tapped performance artist Marina Abramović of “The Artist Is Present” fame to be Artistic Director. Abramović honored his vision by creating a huge set from recycled material and debris on Pier 26, a location which offered a clear view of the Freedom Tower. Her soundtrack was surprising, and melded music from six different cultures and religions. The amount of thought that went into the orchestration of Givenchy’s Spring/Summer 2016 show reflected Tisci’s attitude toward America, Abramović’s message of inclusivity, and the brand’s devotion to art.
This event that we are creating together is about forgiveness, inclusivity, new life, hope, and, above all, love.
Dozens of A-listers crowded the front row to catch a glimpse of the collection’s silky slips, robes, lounge jackets, and other boudoir-themed pieces, as well as a slick line-up of menswear. The real magic, however, came in the form of astonishing velvet ball gowns trimmed with voluminous puffball ruffles, feathery tops, and sculpted outerwear. These stunning looks featured couture-level detailed work that boggled the mind, including cracked-leather surfaces stamped with studded centers, yards of blonde tresses attached to sheer embroidered sheaths, and tiered sheer and ruffled gowns topped with oversized chiffon appliqués. After wowing the audience with a series of dramatic eveningwear, Tisci revisited the boudoir, amplifying his delicate first looks with glossy leather, luxurious lace paneling, and sensual silks.
Abramović’s show notes ended with a poetic reminder; “This event that we are creating together is about forgiveness, inclusivity, new life, hope, and, above all, love.” It prodded the audience to remember fashion’s positive, transformational effects. Thus, the artistic statement and ravishing beauty of Givenchy’s collection added up to one seriously powerful show, especially when viewed in the shadow of New York City’s altered skyline.
Photos: Courtesy of Imaxtree