louis vuitton's high flying ode to new york
Nicolas Ghesquiere took us to JFK's landmark TWA Flight Terminal to pay glittering homage to the city's Art Deco skyline.
Images courtesy of Louis Vuitton.
Last night, Nicolas Ghesquière’s relentless quest for modernist show spaces took the assorted fashion press to JFK, for Louis Vuitton’s cruise ‘19 show. Nestled among the terminals is the TWA Flight Center, an incredible Eero Saarinen-designed spaceship of a building, which was in operation from 1962 until it closed almost 20 years ago. It was the perfect setting for Ghesquière’s collection, a tribute to the sharp Art Deco lines of New York, but twisted as if the city was the backdrop for a forthcoming installment of iconic Japanese video game Final Fantasy.
This was an exuberant, colorful collection that will perfectly suit the many elaborately clad clients that the House had invited to the show. Embroideries redolent of the Chrysler building were picked out in gorgeous beadwork across little cape jackets, worn with mini-skirts that harked back to the golden age of airline stewardess outfits. A parade of tailoring played with 80s silhouettes, a subtle comment on the Working Girl aesthetic that still seems to define (plague?) Wall Street. Hayett McCarthy looked superb in a patent leather coat redolent of some of Ghesquière’s earlier experiments with shape, while Heather Kemesky’s short-suit worn with a sleek leather flight hat was a sleek standout among the rich embroidery and experiments with form.
As the collection progressed, the embellishment became steadily ritzier — Marte Mei van Haaster seemed to sprout crystal wings from around her neck, pouff skirts furthered the vibe of 80s flamboyance, and the finale look combined a Blade Runner beauty look with a jacket combining draped velvet and an embroidered bodice (and gloves). It was a glorious embarras de richesse, and as the designer made his appearance at the end of the runway, the crowd, which included Cate Blanchett and Indya Moore, rose to cheer him. Ghesquière’s flight of fancy was evidently a roaring success.