For the third time, Rick Owens presents his collection in the Venice lagoon, right in front of his house. Nothing more comfortable, right? The collection was, indeed, about comfort, with many enveloping bodysuits, layered sweaters and down bomber jackets. Defining Rick Owens as “comfortable” is definitely anyways out of place. His style is strong and well defined, and always hides a guerrilla soul, which emerges in the shapes and colours and is every time surprising.
Owens’ models look like aliens landed from some spaceship. The lagoon adds the atmosphere, with its cold shades and the constant fog that sweeps the catwalk, but the effect is also due to the outfits. The architectural shapes of the outerwear, the padded and high shoulders, the very long and torn sleeves on the hands, lengthen the human body and make it wiry, otherworldly. Thus, the apparent comfort of materials and cuts meets the extreme precision (worthy of haute couture) of some spectacular pieces. Perhaps, the goal is to make the wearer feel extremely powerful, reinforced as if by a kind of ultra-modern armour.
The Fall-Winter 2021 gave us a feeling of intimacy that is not foreign to Owens’ creations, but that this time we can better define, thanks also to the words of the designer himself, who declared that, given the absence public, these private fashion shows seem like ceremonies aimed only at the creatives and no one else – as if they were invited to taste their own art after they finished it.
In fact, despite the incredible strength of his models, Rick Owens always seduces the viewer on a psychological level and seems to go straight to the heart through sinuous, unexpected garments, for many unwearable. It is a feeling that is difficult to define, but palpable: the privacy of the Venice lagoon, the small creative team that helps Owens in the collections, are full of this intriguing, indefinable intimacy, which has no borders or language and speaks to anyone.
Cover image courtesy: gorunway.com by Carlo Scarpato