“Go big or go home” seems to be Carol Lim and Humberto Leon’s mantra, as the creative duo behind Kenzo just showed off the fiercely and literally wild Kenzo x H&M fall 2016 collection at Pier 36, New York, on October 19th, namely just two weeks ahead of its global launch. H&M actually shares a history of super crazy, imposing parties and runway shows too, as we still all remember the one the Swedish retailer held for the previous Balmain x H&M capsule collection.
Needless to say, this Kenzo x H&M runaway show’s first row was filled with models, actresses, actors and personalities of the moment, among which Lupita Nyong’o, Iman, Chloë Sevigny, Chance the Rapper, Sienna Miller, Rosario Dawson, Elizabeth Olsen, June Ambrose, Joe Jonas, and Bethann Hardison surely stood out of the crowd (and whose pictures got shared on almost every social media). Onstage, musician and rapper Ice Cube performed his best songs, adding an even more exclusive touch to the entire show.
Aside from Ice Cube and a front row packed with the most influential personalities, the Kenzo x H&M runway show was particularly touching and emotional, as it celebrated Kenzo Takada’s legacy. Humerto Leon and Carol Lim, who made no secret of their admiration for Kenzo’s founder, have been celebrating him and his legacy with patterns and motifs from the past, refined through a more contemporary lens in their seasonal proposals.
The Kenzo x H&M capsule collection was no less so, and of course its show was equally celebratory. Back in the Seventies and Eighties, Kenzo Takada’s runway shows featured cheerful and thoughtful performances of dancers, musicians and artists, which helped give Kenzo its signature look and style.
“Humberto said, ‘It would be really great to take the pieces from the archive and celebrate those pieces along with pieces we created in our first collection and have a true conversation between us and Kenzo Takada,’” Carol Lim told Vogue.
Lim and Leon let the show become multidisciplinary, with the models dancing to Charles Wright & The Watts’ hits from the Seventies. Beatboxers, saxophone players surely helped the models synchronize and get in tune, as renowned French director and photographer Jean-Paul Goude – the one who directed both the runway show and shot the iconic Kenzo x H&M campaign, apparently just told the models to feel at ease and have fun.
And just by watching the videos, browsing through the pictures and snaps of the show, we can fairly state the models (and audience) did have a lot of fun walking for this Kenzo x H&M runway show! The crazy dances, filled with purposely dramatic and grotesque poses and gestures, sort of recalled the Kenzo x H&M capsule collection’s patterns, which were wild indeed.
For the show’s grand finale, strobe lights, confetti aplenty and even wilder poses were involved, leaving the ones who managed to watch the show live speechless.
“We try to give everything a true authentic story. We’ve always been diverse, we’ve always been inclusive … we’re not doing anything to be on trend. This is just how we’ve always done it,” concluded Leon.
Last but not least, it is also worth mentioning that, according to Highsnobiety, somehow “a few entrepreneurial eBay users have put up key pieces from the [Kenzo x H&M] collection already, at outrageous markups. The users ask customers to list their size upfront and state that purchases won’t be shipped until release day, so it’s likely these are just pre-orders from people who will be lined up way before stores open.” So, pay attention!
Photos courtesy of Vogue