When the world seems to be veering dangerously off course and every warning light flashes an angry red, you can rely on the grounding, regulating patterns of nature to guide the path ahead. At least, that was the message from Kenzo and their SS21 collection, an offering born out of uncertainty and strife which nonetheless culminated with notes of optimism and balance.
As Felipe Oliveira Baptista said himself in the accompanying show notes, the references for this collection were an eclectic smorgasbord of fears, hopes and anxieties, a reflection of his, and just about everyone elses’ mindset over the past few months. This was a collection about gritting one’s teeth and not giving in, despite the rain battering the windows and the gathering grey clouds, after all, Kenzo has always been about fun.
In keeping with this idea, the collection played out with a theatrical sense of contrast. Beekeepers outfits, a reminder of nature’s relentless cycles (or an optimistic suggestion that we all pull together and get along), dominated the show’s profile, at times protecting just the face and at others the entire body. Floral prints abounded with a vibrant injection of colour that was in keeping with the rest of the collection and, contrary to the protection offered by the beekeepers outfits, exposed naked skin that appeared vulnerable in contrast.
GALLERYCatwalk images from Kenzo WSS21