Prada Spring/Summer 2014 Ready-to-Wear collection by Gina Hanne Christiansen
A street/gang element reared its head throughout the collection intervened by tribal and artistic references. An idea spawned originally after seeing political Mexican muralist’s wall art which then developed into Miuccia instructing a group of six graffiti and muralist artists into designing and depicting imagery of women in the everyday looking empowered and ended up styling the walls and the venue Via Fogazzaro in Milan where the show took place.
As bold as the surroundings were Miuccia Prada made sure the collection would turn heads and stand out more provocatively then the vibrant backdrop. Thus a rainbow extravaganza entered the runway, garments from a colour pallet so versatile in colour and shade it emphasizes the outrageous, urban/street vibe surrounding. The whole imagery of women’s faces depicted on garments and intertwined into abstract patterns all related to Miuccia Prada’s strong feminist views and about empowering women through the art form.
“My instrument is fashion. I use my instrument to be bold. I had this idea that if you wear clothes so exaggerated and out there, people will look, and then they will listen.” – Miuccia Prada
It’s all quite loud and outrageous really, a metamorphism of city chic meets street art in a pop art world of colour and liberation. With the show starting out an exquisite cataclysm of colours and abstract art. Gradually transforming into an elaborate assortment of monumental feminist statements made in simply one fashion show through the art of voicing opinion through exquisite design.
A darkly decadent spin on urban street style/sportswear meets high class fashion. It’s a complete parallel to Miuccia Prada’s usual designs a new trend and style in which she delved into with a headstrong clear determination and boy did she pull it off.
With models strutting the runway in sports socks and embroidered bras, extravagant bags and effervescent dresses. It’s a mesmerizing work of art devised by a beautiful mind, with the venue being created in such a perplexing fashion it’s almost a little too much to take in at once. Miuccia aim was to please, shock and awe her audience and make them want to buy her collection and she did. Colour blocking bras onto dresses and coats it’s an eccentric field day for fashion but works perfectly in emphasis and collaboration with the landscape surrounding.
Prada’s mission to encourage the concept of feminism into fashion is a visual and inspirational motif throughout their own collections and designs, as well as inspiring the world and their clientèle to fulfil their idea. Empowering women through fashion and by dressing them in extravagant attire that will turn heads is almost Miuccia’s mission statement. Giving women the ability to make a statement and make a stand through one of our most desired accessories.
Taking the graphic tee to a new level by placing Jeanne Detallante and El Mac’s art (two of the six artists work) on not only the contiguous back drop but on the garments itself creating a whole new genre of fashion. Delving into the concept of feminist meets fashionista they helped create what Miuccia envisaged. Working for a new commission ‘in the heart of multitude’ a project collaborating with artists and illustrators to elaborate on themes of femininity, empowerment, multiplicity and representation.
El Mac (Miles McGregor) acquired his inspirations from graffiti, photorealism and Chicano. Also Mexican culture and is often commissioned to create murals and has worked all over the USA. You can see his inspirations clearly throughout his work including the environment of the show depicting intricate images of women appearing seductive through power not sex appeal. Jeanne Detallante has developed a well-established style exploring the mythological and high end fashion. Fairy tales and high end editorials incorporated into one artist’s portfolio. Detallante is a versatile mastermind creating imaginary worlds which transpires into the interior design of the Via Fogazzaro. However as much as art appears to have influenced this collection Miuccia insists that art didn't influence her designs and said “I want to stick to my roots as a fashion designer”.
Remarkably the Prada collection is a complete parallel to Valentino’s ready to Wear Spring/Summer 2014 collection. A mesmerizing, breathtaking collection on the other spectrum. Prada was loud and out there Valentino however has created an intimate collection of delicate sheer fabrics and a simpler colour palette of ivories and rich gold and blacks however they both share the inspiration of femininity although Valentino delves into it on a far deeper form.
All varieties of nature had a certain influence on Valentino’s collection from a trail of elegant butterflies to lions and animalistic forms incorporating all organic forms from the beauty of a flower to the colour scheme of a cloudy skyline. Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli the creative directors described the collection as a journey and you can see it visibly through the gradients of the colour variation almost as if travelling on a safari and depicting each variant in colour as a different animal and environment along the way.
The usage of earthy tones and shades was a complete contrast in comparison to Miuccia Prada’s vibrant colour blocking technique. Also the lack of embellishments in comparison to Prada’s over extravagant bras and clutches. Using music rather than art as there form of flow the collection has a much more elegant refined approach in comparison to Prada’s edgy, modern spin. African culture mixed with tribal prints going on a safari was the feel of this collection. With each piece hardly relating to the next it was apparent they were confident in their finesse and new exactly how to execute their collection. It’s all very organic and earthy using anther method to exude femininity through nature and women’s natural
form rather than adapting and transforming like Prada.
form rather than adapting and transforming like Prada.
Overall I feel Miuccia achieved what she wanted to achieve however I don’t feel it expresses true feminist passion and empowerment as Prada has simply placed images of women onto garments and called it empowering women when really their essentially just publicizing women as objects and that’s not necessarily what they intentionally meant to do.
However that being said Miuccia Prada’s thrive to allow women to wear clothes that turn heads and give us a voice is what was achieved. These ready to wear clothes are hardly casual everyday material although if you’re strutting round in one of the spring/summer numbers you’re bound to turn heads but not necessarily in the aimed way opted to be achieved. I feel over all the success of the brand is through Miuccia innovative and original designs however in this particular collection the message was received but not carried out to its full potential. A feminist portraying garments with colour block bras and women’s faces plastered everywhere as much as is different from the usual provocative, seductive wear it still portrays women as objective figures defined by bras and lingerie. It’s all a mish mash of colour and controversy and just simply wasn’t delivered in a way I felt necessary which is unfortunate because the concept was there just not to my particular taste.