The dual show format at Dior Homme’s FW16 runway show in many ways encapsulated and expressed the spirit of the collection. A Willy Vanderperre-lensed film played on screens (which seems to be the mode of presentation du jour these days) while the models walked the runway. On screen, they danced and bopped about. On the runway, they walked stony-faced and serious.
Herein lies the dichotomous harmony of Kris Van Assche’s point of view with the storied house’s men’s division. While Maria Grazia Chiuri has a lot of heritage and history to live up to, Van Assche is left freer without any actual archival material from Mr Dior himself. It’s this freedom that’s allowed him to carve out a niche of ultra luxurious suiting discipline mixed with a sporty and rebellious youth spirit.
In the FW16 collection, we got skate culture mashed up with classical tailoring silhouettes. That edge of street-readiness flowed happily into the accessories collection as well. Darklight is a range of classic shapes (backpacks, duffels, briefcases, etc.) rendered in canvas with a classic monogram, juxtaposed with overprinted checks, embroidered ‘scars’, daubed with white paint, or covered in works by the Japanese artist Toru Kamei.
These represent the slant of the brand perfectly. With a shadowy colour palette, the monogram is made almost abstract and textural, while the details accent the pieces with just the right amount of interest. That’s the Dior Homme signature, isn’t it? Youth and irreverence captured in the vein of luxury.