THE FINAL moments of Humberto Leon and Carol Lim’s creative vision for Kenzo are a stunning tribute to the house. After eight years, the culmination of their partnership results in an ethereal spectacle for the thousands attending the menswear show at Paris SS20. As the lights dim, the audience is thrown into the shadows, anxiously anticipating the collection to come.
When the show begins, it becomes very clear that design duo have chosen the theme of their final performance in homage to founder Kenzo Takada and the mythic seas surrounding Japan.
In collaboration with photographer, Yamazaki Hiroshi, Leon and Lim pull out all of the stops with massive curtain backdrop for the catwalk. Scenes of the suns journey above the ocean leave the audience in tantalising awe. One can’t help but see the artwork as symbolic of the spectacular rise of Leon and Lim as well as their inevitable decision to move on to a new career frontier.
The entrancing spectacle is only heightened by the dynamic designs that cross in front of the seascape. Exquisitely tailored, mostly every look is dedicated to the otherworldly beauty of the Japanese sea.
A few of the most notable features of the collection that serve accentuate the chosen motif are the wide net mens bags, the dazzling oceanic textures of the dresses and the pearly embellishments. Models transform into mythic creatures of the sea, many of whom don coral pink or inky blue elements.
Looking closely at the intricate details, traditional Japanese artwork make appearances on several of the looks through delicate stitch-work.
It wouldn’t be Carol Lim or Humberto Leon’s final collection if it did not come along with one or two surprises. To the spectators’ amazement, the angelic melody of Solange Knowles sweeps across every inch of Paris’s AccorHotels Arena halfway through the show. Dancers perform on zori’s, traditional Japanese footwear.
Every element of the collection is a dream-like captivation woven together expertly leaving the audience spellbound. Since the beginning of their long-standing reign over the house, Leon and Lim have successfully reignited the Kenzo Takada’s sheer passion the fashion world. The brilliant duo have not only departed Kenzo with grace and elegance, but in a celebration of their extraordinary odyssey in high fashion.
by Maria Noyen