Valentino F/W 2017
Gentle yet Manly, not Gentlemanly, Fashion
An ode to sensitive and artistic men – though blended through Punk Rebellion and Situationalist Art – from Valentino on Wednesday, the opening of the Paris menswear runway fashion.
The tailoring was off beat classical. Though a quarter of the looks were covered with bold lettering, courtesy of UK artist Jamie Reid, famed for creating the Sex Pistols album covers.
The show featured artfully cut cloaks over classic suits, trim redingotes – Sherlock Holmes on the Tiber, though almost immediately, Valentino designer Pierpaolo Piccioli started covering the coats and a series of boxy messenger boy jerkins with Reid’s wacky aphorisms.
“It seemed to be the end until the next beginning,” or “Reclaim your heritage, beauty is a birthright,” read the two phrases from Reid applied with couture intarsia.
No surprise, the designer’s mood board wandered from Sid Vicious to Francis Bacon in a Belgravia club. In Piccioli’s view, the advent of feminism and the growth of careers opportunities meant women had to alter their world vision and behavior far earlier than men.
“I wanted to reflect on what it means to be a man today. Beginning with the roots, in Britain and in a gentleman’s club. But adding gentleness to masculinity. It’s more about Gentle Men than Gentlemen. In the past 10 years men have had to change. To be virile now is not showing power. It is to be sensitive and even fragile,” commented the designer. Not perhaps, his greatest menswear show, but plenty of food for thought and crisp clothes to wear.