Silent Protests For Rick Owens at Paris Menswear SS16

A few years ago I perhaps would have dismissed a show like Rick Owens, because it maybe weren't quite as wearable as some other shows. Now I have matured a lot from a fashion point of view and have realised how pathetic that was of myself. I appreciate fashion  so much more now, to a point in which I now find out as much as I can from the collections I missed. Not just Rick Owens, but tons of designers who have now become some of my favourites to look out for each season, and Rick Owens was just the perfect candidate to back up my reason. For his menswear collection last season, Rick Owens once again changed the way we see high fashion by exposing the male penis as models walked down the runway. That in particular is something I respect most about a fashion designer. Someone who can make a statement, provoke something, cause a reaction, inject some shock-value and in doing so maybe be a little controversial, which in fact is something I personally love and am drawn to. Although this season the controversy didn't completely lie with Rick Owens quite so much, it was actually his former muse Jera that walked out with a self-made banner that had the words "Please Kill Angela Merkel" followed by the word "Not" written on it in marker pen. It is believed that Rick Owens punched the model as soon as he reached backstage and had him escorted off the premises. Which ironically ties into the inspiration behind the collection, how male aggression gets the better of us sometimes, as it did with Rick's former muse and even Rick himself. Rick Owens revealed and I quote "It's about the idea of male aggression - whenever I think about men's collections I always think about the idea of aggression because it's just part of a man's DNA and it's something I struggle with and I think a lot of other men do too". 

The collection was dubbed "Cyclops" - An aggressive monster with narrow focal point. That explains that wonderfully imaginative wind tunnel-like wigs, created by Duffy that focused solely on one's eyes and of course drew attention. Rick Owens himself said he was being a little bit literal, however to me, not so much because it's meaning ran so much deeper beyond the surface. Rick Owens claimed he was fixated on the M-65 Field Jacket, how it could play more roles than it's original intention, how it serves as both a piece of military uniform yet also worn by rebellious anti-war protestors. "The M-65 represents heroism but questions it at the same time" Rick said just before his show. However quite strangely Rick also said that he doesn't like military references, as he doesn't like to comment on current affairs? Surely those combat boots couldn't have helped, No? The garments displayed throughout were in a mix of Rick Owens' moody colour palette along with a mix of summery hues like mints and shades of salmon. From the shining metallics, to the dynamic draping, the crackled sheen of sleeveless leather, even alien translucent leather almost like latex and the more sculptural pieces to end paid homage to experimental sixties American artists John Chamberlain and Steven Parrino, of who Rick Owens has had a long-term obsession with. The shapes may have still been a little too "Rick" but who cares? I mean I love that he only tweaks small parts and builds upon and enhances them one season after another. Once again Rick Owens gave more than enough to prove a point and never one to be one-dimensional. The complexity of emotional layers to Spring/Summer 2016 was simply outstanding, although that might just be dismissed by the work of a certain former muse.

Images courtesy of Dazed Digital, Time and

Well that is it for Rick Owens Spring/Summer 2016. It seemed like a truly well thought-out show, again from someone who I remember reading somewhere has been named the greatest fashion designer of all time on a number of occasions. I am slowly but surely getting through all of favourite shows from Paris and a massive thank you for sticking with me, no matter how delayed some posts are. So yeah big love to everyone who reads my blog and I know I say this a lot, but you're the reason I continue to do this. I guess the latest show from Rick Owens proved how one person can ruin it for everyone, I just hope people look past what happened and see the clothes for how amazing they each were.

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