Catching up with Simon Porte Jacquemus
After a particularly successful Fall-Winter 2016-2017 runway show, Numéro met the winner of the 2015 LVMH Prize, Simon Porte Jacquemus. The designer spoke to us about his “Reconstruction” collection.
On Monday, the first night of Paris Fashion Week, Simon Porte Jacquemus presented a particularly impressive fall-winter runway show. Jacquemus, winner of the 2015 LVMH Prize, revealed a new creative depth: his clothes were more constructed, more worked over, transporting the traditional masculine-feminine codes into a fantastic universe. Exaggerated forms, as if swollen, became almost pure geometry. Silhouettes were so flattened that they appeared to be clothes for paper dolls. There were asymmetries, hybrids, references to the checked tablecloths of brasseries. The themes thus far explored by Simon Porte Jacquemus here find themselves redefined in a pertinent, unique language. In the front row were Demna Gvasalia and Lotta Volkova of the label Vetements, there to support their friend and bear witness to the creative synergy that is shaking up Paris’ young guard. A backstage interview.
Numéro : This collection reveals that you have moved on to the next phase: your designs are more elaborate and your humor has taken on a more mature irony.
Simon Porte Jacquemus: In this collection, I wanted to mix up the distinctions between men’s and women’s fashion, exaggerating forms and playing with shapes. The collection also mixes several time periods, like the “space age” of the sixties, and the ‘90s. I also designed heels for the first time. At first it was hard to move away from flats, which I love.
The humor that you display in each of your runway shows has also become more mature: it has a darker, more melancholy irony.
The title of this collection, “Reconstruction,” evokes the energy that is born sometimes by accident, when you need to assert yourself, to find a new force. It’s the same for me: I have moved into another period in my career as a designer. Colors are still present, but the ensemble is darker [and in the literal sense, too: at the beginning and end of the runway show, the whole room was plunged into darkness].
The fact that the soundtrack only featured the beginnings of songs gave the show a more performative, conceptual dimension.
Yes, it was important for me to find an auditory equivalent to the clothes. The musical collage recalls the collection’s “vintage” inspiration. There are some looks that are very Barbès-- that almost resemble the outfits worn by prostitutes-- with the mismatched thigh-boots, the heels of two different colors, one boot short and the other higher. I like playing with bad taste. It’s also a mix of references to fashion history: I wanted to create a couture collection and paid close attention to detail, like the 1950s sleeves.
By Delphine Roche.