Dior Spring/Summer 2014

I have returned to blogging with one of my favorite posts from last season – The Art of… A Runway Show. The spring/summer 2014 collections were filled with art references both in looks presented and the runway backdrops. Christian Dior, once again, makes the list thanks to Raf Simon’s enchanted secret garden with flowers hanging in a Hew Locke-fashion. Hedi Slimane brightened up the Saint Laurent runway with a series of suspended light sculptures similar in style to the work of artist Ivan Navarro. Dries Van Noten and Rodarte paid homage to my two favorite minimalists, Donald Judd and Dan Flavin, respectively. Dries lined his runway with a series of Judd-esque Stacks while Kate and Laura took a cue from their spring/summer 2013 show and scattered the runway, yet again, with Flavin’s neon light beams. Ricardo Tisci staged a car crash on the Givenchy runway similar to the work Short Cut, 2003, by Elmgreen and Dragset. Above the runway at Chloe hung a single gold inverted plate almost identical to Untitled, 2012, by Anish Kapoor while photos from Anya Hindmarch’s Cirque du Soleil-inspired show resembled James Rosenquist’s Multiple Universe works from 2012. Both Alexander Wang and Felipe Oliveira Baptista for Lacoste created backdrops mimicking Sol Lewitt’s Costruzione Cubica, 1971.

Lastly, this wouldn’t be a proper spring/summer 2014 art and fashion post without mentioning Prada and Chanel. This season Miuccia Prada commissioned street artists and illustrators to provide designs for the both the clothing and accessories as well as runway backdrop for Prada while at Chanel Karl Lagerfeld constructed his very own high fashion art gallery within the walls of the Grand Palais.

Excited to see who chooses an artistic setting to compliment the fall/winter 2014 collections in the weeks to come!

Left: Christian Dior Spring/Summer 2014 and Right: artwork by Hew Locke

Saint Laurent Spring/Summer 2014

Work by Ivan Navarro

Left: Dries Van Noten Spring/Summer 2014 and Right: work by Donald Judd

Left: Rodarte Spring/Summer 2014 and Right: work by Dan Flavin

Right: Givenchy Spring/Summer 2014 and Right: Short Cut, 2003 by Elmgreen and Dragset

Left: Chloe Spring/Summer 2014 and Right: Untitled, 2012, by Anish Kapoor

Left and Right: Anya Hindmarch Spring/Summer 2014 and Middle: James Rosenquist, 2012

Left: Alexander Wang Spring/Summer 2014 and Right: Lacoste Spring/Summer 2014

Sol Lewitt, Costruzione Cubica, 1971

Prada Spring/Summer 2014

Chanel Spring/Summer 2014

Miu Miu Spring/Summer 2011 and Roy Lichtenstein’s Wall Explosion II, 1965

While the spring/summer 2014 fashion season is well underway, nothing shown thus far is sure to stick in consumers’ minds for the next six months until the collections are available for purchase.

For fall 2013, top honors went to Tom Ford’s explosive appliqués that, regardless of their commercial appeal, made quite the impact. The buzz surrounding Mr.Ford’s fall collection could have been in part due to it being his first full-scale runway show since his return to womenswear, however his designs impressed nonetheless. The evening looks, complete with Lichtenstein-eque explosions, are featured in the Tom Ford fall ad campaign and have graced the pages of countless high fashion editorials since their runway debut. Looking back, it was Miuccia Prada who used a similar in-your-face approach to ready-to-wear for spring/summer 2011 with her firecracker leather skirts and jackets at Miu Miu (pictured above).

Tom Ford Fall/Winter 2013 Advertisement

Soon after, Phillip Lim made an even more obvious ode to Lichtenstein for pre-fall 2012, mimicking the pop artist’s famous style similar to how Spanish pop art team, Equipo Cronica, has done in the past.

3.1 Phillip Lim Pre-Fall 2012 and Equipo Cronica’s Guernica, 1971

Chanel Fall/Winter 2009 Couture

For fall/winter 2009 couture, Karl Lagerfeld took a more abstract approach to fireworks and explosions at Chanel. Two standout looks from the collection bared striking similarities to the works by artists Wassily Kandinsky and Robert Delaunay; entitled Squares with Concentric Circles, 1913, and Le Premier Disque, 134 cm, 52.7 inches, 1912-13, respectively.

Left: Squares with Concentric Circles, 1913 by Wassily Kandinsky and Right: Le Premier Disque, 134 cm, 52.7 inches, 1912-13 by Robert Delaunay

Lastly, no reference to explosive fashion would be complete without mentioning Christopher Kane’s 2010 resort collection. The atomic bomb dresses and separates were unforgettable and almost identical to images in Robert Longo’s series of charcoal, bomb drawings, The Sickness of Reason.

No matter what the season – fall, resort, spring or pre-fall – ready-to-wear or couture, designers are more than capable of making an impact. Now it is your turn spring/summer 2014, wow us.

Christopher Kane Resort 2010 and Atomic Bomb charcoal drawing by Robert Longo

From Left: Narciso Rodriguez, Erdem, Christian Dior and Louis Vuitton Pre-Fall 2013

The fall 2013 shopping season is well under way. Collections shown almost six months ago are finally hitting stores and available for purchase. In an effort to re-familiarize myself with pre-fall I have been flipping through shows style.com and noticed a pattern amongst the collections. Designers from Narciso Rodriguez to Erdem as well as Parisian houses like Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior showed multiple, if not all, of their 2013 pre-fall looks in pairs.

Dolce & Gabbana, Viktor & Rolf and Valentino’s Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli

This latest pre-fall development is hardly the first time the fashion world has experienced the impact of a twosome. Could this trend have come about as a result of the continuing success of designer pairs from Dolce & Gabbana and Viktor & Rolf, to Valentino’s Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli? Just this past June the CFDA awards for womenswear designer of the year and the Swarovski award for womenswear were presented to American duos Proenza Shoulder and Suno, respectively, and in 2012 Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen were awarded top honors for The Row.

John Galliano spring/summer 2006 and Chanel spring/summer 2013 couture

The art world, however, recognized the power of pairs far before John Galliano sent obscure couples down the runway for his namesake spring/summer 2006 ready-to-wear show and prior to Lagerfeld’s double bride finale for Chanel spring/summer 2013 couture.

Left: Dan Flavin & Donald Judd and right: Peter Fischli & David Weiss

Artists such as Dan Flavin and Donald Judd as well as Peter Fischli & David Weiss began collaborating in the 1970s while modern day duos from Elmgreen and Dragset to Kelley Walker and Wade Guyton have made names for themselves as twosomes.

Left: Elmgreen & Dragset and right: Wade Guyton and Kelley Walker

Countless solo artists have explored the concept of duality within their personal work. One of photographer Diane Arbus’ most celebrated images – Identical Twins, Roselle, New Jersey, 1967 – famously depicts identical young females and by happenchance began a cultural revolution; is it said that the pair were the inspiration behind the twins in Stanley Kubrick’s surrealist horror film, The Shining. Arbus herself even worked in collaboration with her husband, Allan, although he is rarely mentioned.

Identical Twins, Roselle, New Jersey, 1967 and twins from The Shining

Likewise, more contemporary female photographers, from Sarah Jones to Cindy Sherman, have embraced twosomes in their individual work; the latter elevated her trademark self-portraits during the photo-shop revolution of the early 2000’s and began appearing multiple times in one image.

Left: work by Sarah Jones and right: work by Cindy Sherman

Regardless of seasonal trends, fashion and art duos continue to prove themselves unstoppable.

Art by Kehinde Wiley, inspired by Givenchy Fall/Winter 2013

Looking back at the Minnie Muse archive, one of my all-time favorite posts to date is Between The Lines from April 2012. It was through the Between The Lines coloring book that I was first introduced to the unbelievable organization RxArt all while rediscovering one of my favorite pastimes as a child, coloring. This year, I once again flipped through the pages of Between The Lines and chose different works to color using the fall/winter 2013 collections as my inspiration. My self-constructed fantasy land includes Givenchy’s FW13 runway hair in form of a baseball cap, a Rodarte rose garden and tie-dye sky, a Jeremy Scott-patterned Giraffe and some sultry/gothic Thom Browne-inspired Murakami flowers. What a world it would be…

Art by Marc Swanson, inspired by Miu Miu Fall/Winter 2013

Art by Mike Bayne, inspired by Rodarte Fall/Winter 2013

Art by Tom Slaughter, inspired by Jeremy Scott Fall/Winter 2013

Art by Ben Jones, inspired by Fendi Fall/Winter 2013


Art by Nicholas Digenova, inspired by Comme des Garçons Fall/Winter 2013


Art by Takashi Murakami, inspired by Thom Browne Fall/Winter 2013

Alexander McQueen FW 2012 ready-to-wear and Giambattista Valli FW 2013 Couture

Is imitation truly the highest form of flattery? Or is it merely a lack of originality? Another couture season has come and gone, this time, with countless designers referencing their contemporaries in a big way. It wasn’t a pattern here or appliqué there, however many houses took direct inspiration from the past, similar to how Joseph Altuzarra famously paid homage to Tom Ford’s fall/winter 2003 ready-to-wear Gucci show for fall/winter 2010. Looking at this most recent couture season, Raf Simons’ global collection for Dior showed a few undeniable similarities to Pheobe Philo’s FW 2012 collection for Céline while Giambattista Valli also looked to FW ’12 and mimicked much of what Sarah Burton showed that season at Alexander McQueen. The first show of the week, Versace, relied on classic underpinnings to serve as the basis on a majority of the looks much like Jason Wu did for spring/summer 2013 and this season, Jean Paul Gaultier sent his bride down in the runway in a gown almost identical to the final few looks in Viktor & Rolf’s spring/summer 2011 show. Similarly, the Dutch duo made subtle references to past collections by the equally avant-garde Rei Kawakubo for their premier couture presentation. Seeing as how this season marked the return of the house of Schiaparelli, maybe designers took that as their cue to make this couture season all about taking something old and making it new again.

Céline FW 2012 ready-to-wear and Christian Dior FW 2013 Couture

Céline FW 2012 ready-to-wear and Christian Dior FW 2013 Couture

Alexander McQueen FW 2012 ready-to-wear and Giambattista Valli FW 2013 Couture

Alexander McQueen FW 2012 ready-to-wear and Giambattista Valli FW 2013 Couture

Viktor & Rolf SS 2011 ready-to-wear and Jean Paul Gaultier FW 2013 Couture

Jason Wu SS 2013 ready-to-wear and Versace FW 2013 Couture

Comme des Garçons FW 2010 ready-to-wear and Viktor & Rolf FW 2013 Couture

My Bed by Tracey Emin

Does anyone even wear pajamas to sleep anymore? It seems the lightweight nightwear has moved up in the clothing hierarchy and earned top honors in recent seasons as acceptable street-wear. While the trend has been in existence for a few years now, fall ’13 showed little backing down. In New York, PJs exploded over the runway at Marc Jacobs from shirts and shorts, to pants and dresses.

Marc Jacobs Fall/Winter 2013

In Paris, Marc showed an equally bedroom-wear-inspired collection at Louis Vuitton. Looking back at the past four years of Vuitton runways, Jacobs showed PJ-pants for spring/summer 2009, an entire oriental-inspired look for spring/summer 2011 and a blue two-piece ensemble in LV’s trademark cheetah print for resort 2012.

Louis Vuitton Spring/Summer 2009, Spring/Summer 2011, 2012 Resort and Fall/Winter 2013

Jacobs seems to be such a fan of the casual everyday-wear that he himself spent fashion month in the comfy separates – gone are the days of his trademark kilt, 2013 is the year of Pajamas.

Marc Jacobs at Marc Jacobs, Marc by Marc Jacobs and Louis Vuitton, all Fall/Winter 2013

Rochas Fall/Winter 2013

Marc Jacobs – as the designer and the man – isn’t the only one embracing casual. Marco Zanini included four PJ looks in his fall 2013 collection for Rochas while last fall Pucci’s Peter Dundas also showed pajamas under more formal outerwear.

Emilio Pucci Fall/Winter 2012

Looking back at 2012, the queens of cool, Pheobe Philio and Stella McCartney, showed nightwear turned daywear for Céline resort and Stella spring/summer, respectively.

From left: Céline 2012 Resort and Stella McCartney Spring/Summer 2012

Lastly, on the topic of pajamas, who could forget spring/summer 2009 Dolce & Gabbana where ever model seemed to be wearing something silk and patterned with contrast piping.

Dolce & Gabbana Spring/Summer 2009

If Jacobs’ decision to sport nightwear for all three of his fall/winter 2013 bows has any connection to his personal Mickey Mouse T at his spring/summer 2007 show and subsequent Mickey shirt for Marc Jacobs spring/summer 2013 (pictured below), prepare to see plenty of more pajama dressing on the Marc Jacobs and Louis Vuitton runways in the years to come.

From Left: Marc Jacobs Spring/Summer 2007 and Spring/Summer 2013

Spring/Summer 2013 runway looks by Tom Ford, Gucci and Stella McCartney

The color that many recognize as cobalt is known formally in the art community as IKB (International Klein Blue) developed by French painter, Yves Klein. Klein first mixed the color, made up primarily of the blue pigment Ultramarine, at the start of his career and registered the unique shade as IKB in 1960. The color covered everything from sculptures and furniture to women’s bodies – Klein would often paint a female’s torso and lay them directly on his canvases (pictured below). Unfortunately, his time as a working artist was cut feverishly short due to a string of heart attacks in 1962, but nevertheless, his work made enough of a cultural impact in a few short years that the term IKB is still used today.

Yves Klein at work

Painting by Yves Klein

This season, the spring 2013 runways from New York to Paris saw pops of Klein’s iconic color. Beginning in New York, Joseph Altuzarra showed pieces accented with rich blue fabric while in London, Tom Ford used the same hue for two looks in his women’s presentation as did Antonio Berardi. In Milan, Gucci sent a collection of monochromatic looks down the runway, two of which were head-to-toe IKB. Finally in Paris, designers from Stella McCartney to Hermes and Elie Saab featured the iconic shade in their collections for spring.

Altuzarra – Spring/Summer 2013

Antonio Berardi – Spring/Summer 2013

Hermes – Spring/Summer 2013

Elie Saab – Spring/Summer 2013

The color made such a statement on the runway that Gucci even shot the two monochromatic IKB looks for their spring 2013 ad campaign. No woman can resist Klein.

Gucci Spring/Summer 2013 Campaign

Gucci Spring/Summer 2013 Campaign

From Left: Vogue cover by Salvador Dali, photograph by Louise Dahl-Wolfe and Elle Fanning photographed by Will Cotton

Collectively, both the fashion and art worlds are about the new and the next. When artists and designers show work that is considered groundbreaking by modern day standards, the question is, is it truly something that either industry hasn’t seen before? Looking at the most recent Paris collections from a beauty standpoint, the hair at Givenchy (pictured below) immediately caught my eye. The helmet-like ringlets compressed to the models’ heads and then spray-painted was a fresh take on beauty that could only be the product of an innovative mind like Ricardo Tisci. As I took a closer look at the backstage shots, the hair began looking more and more like dried, shriveled up flowers. Seeing, instead, a bouquet atop each head took me back to the golden age of magazine covers.

Right around the time of the Second World War and during the heyday of Surrealism, Salavdor Dali was accepted as a great talent not only in the art community but the fashion world. In addition to his close relationship with designer Elsa Schiaparelli and his collection of surrealist jewels (previously featured here), he guest edited a few, select issues of Vogue. His art appeared on covers, including the June 1939 issue (above, left), which depicts a woman jumping rope in the background and a girl sitting with a flower bouquet for a head in the foreground.

Fast-forward to the iconic Louise Dahl Wolfe photograph of Ivy Nicholson on the April 1958 cover of Harper’s Bazaar (above, center) featuring Nicholson with a flower-like helmet. This image was clearly inspired by Dali’s cover and subsequently influenced countless fashion photographs in the later years; most recently, Elle Fanning’s cover of New York Magazine’s Spring 2013 fashion issue, photographed by Will Cotton (above, right).

Givenchy Fall/Winter 2013

In addition to the photograph’s influence on Givenchy’s fall show, these same flower-like ringlets also made their way onto the McQueen runway, under Sarah Burton’s ornate crowns (pictured below).

Alexander McQueen FW 2013

This wasn’t, however, the first time the celebrated Dahl-Wolfe photo has been referenced, who could forget John Galliano’s floral-inspired penultimate couture collection for Christian Dior. For fall/winter 2010 Galliano sent floral looks down the runway, accompanied by petal-inspired hairpieces (pictured below), a subtle ode to Dahl-Wolfe.

Christian Dior Fall/Winter 2010 Couture

Similarly, in Karl Lagerfeld’s spring/summer 2009 Chanel couture show (previously referenced here, pictured below), models wore paper flowers atop their heads, morphing from delicate tiaras into floral hats and a flower helmet – worn by Feja, Karl’s bride for the season, in place of a veil.

Chanel Fall/Winter 2009

Lastly, milliner Philip Treacy took a cue from Dahl-Wolfe and created a floral helmet (pictured below), which was most recently worn by Lady Gaga (for a bit of pop culture).

Lady Gaga in Philip Treacy

(From Left) Marc Jacobs, Thakoon and Cushnie et Ochs Fall/Winter 2013

Season-after-season there is always a trend so widespread you wonder if the entire fashion world pulled from the same inspiration board. For fall/winter 2013 designers from New York to Paris looked for innovative ways to show fall’s favorite texture – fur. While there are still enough classic animal coats to go around, it looks as though there will also be plenty of fur tops, skirts, dresses, cuffs, gloves, bags and shoes to keep the entire fashion world warm come 2013’s chilly winter months.

Beginning in New York, Marc Jacobs, Thakoon and Cushnie et Ochs (pictured above) all showed looks of monochromatic fur separates while Joseph Altuzarra (pictured below) showed sculptural dresses with fur sleeves and black and white gloves/fur paws.

Altuzarra Fall/Winter 2013

J.W. Anderson Fall/Winter 2013

In London, J.W. Anderson (pictured above) made up for his sleeveless fall tops and short dresses by doing them in elephant grey and black mink.

Moving on to Milan, Miuccia Prada accented her fall jackets for her namesake label (pictured below) with thick fur cuffs in contrasting hues.

Prada Fall/Winter 2013

For Acne’s premier Paris fashion week show, models were accessorized with fur necklace-collars and fur trimmed heels.

Acne Fall/Winter 2013

(From Left) Jean Paul Gaultier and Chloe Fall/Winter 2013

Both Jean Paul Gaultier and Clare Waight Keller for Chloe (pictured above) sent fur skirts in varying lengths down the runway while Phoebe Philo at Céline and Richard Nicoll (who shows in London) explored the concept of a fur dress (pictured below).

(From Left) Céline and Richard Nicoll Fall/Winter 2013

Isabel Marant Fall/Winter 2013

Isabel Marant showed black and cream boots covered in fur and pony hair while Karl Lagerfeld used little to no fur this season at Chanel except for colorful hats in various hues – that bear a striking resemblance to the bright bobs from the fall/winter 2012 Comme Des Garçons show.

Chanel Fall/Winter 2013

Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2013

Marc Jacobs showed his fall/winter collection for Louis Vuitton on the final day of Paris fashion week and kept the season’s hottest trend alive with fur-accented dresses and reinterpretations of classic LV bag – such as the speedy – using fur and muted tones.

Louis Vuitton Accessories Fall/Winter 2013

Giambattista Valli Fall/Winter 2013

While almost every designer this season used fur in some capacity, Giambattista Valli and Consuelo Castiglioni for Marni showed the most fur-accented looks. Along with his collection for Moncler Gamme Rouge, Giambattista used the texture for his own line on everything from dresses, to collars, shoes, bags and belts.

The Marni show was so furry that it was at some points reminiscent of Lagerfeld’s Chanel iceberg collection from fall/winter 2010. Nearly every one of Castiglioni’s 42 runway looks was shown with a furry coat, top, scarf, collar, hem, gloves, purse or boots. Sorry PETA, fall 2013 is not the season for you…

Marni Fall/Winter 2013

The trickiest part of a good season of shows – fall, especially – comes when having to choose a favorite. While I like different collections for different reasons, it was hard to choose one, two, or even three that stood out to me – so I have compiled a top ten list. After much deliberation here are my standout collections for the fall/winter 2013 season and my favorite looks from each show… Enjoy!

Joseph Altuzarra showed one of the most cohesively wearable, yet modern collections of the entire season. His cinched waists, fur sleeves, discrete pops of color and cropped jackets over longer, interior pieces stood out amongst the slew of oversized coats and forgiving cuts many designers showed for fall.

Altuzarra Fall/Winter 2013

Phoebe Philo, the queen of tomboy separates, made this coming winter the season for feminine minimalism. Her past fall collections have been a slew of black, navy and camel but for 2013 the primarily light pallet with few patterns and pops of color was a fresh take on cold weather dressing. I can’t wait to get my hands on a below-the-knee skirt and oversized clutch come fall.

Céline Fall/Winter 2013

When it comes to mixing colors, textures, patterns and prints no one can do it quite like Givenchy’s Ricardo Tisci. For fall, Tisci showed everything from sheer to fur; entirely black leather looks to flowers, plaid and even Bambi, all accompanied by the perfect mid-calf, non-platform skin boot and bright, flower-filled helmet hair.

Givenchy Fall/Winter 2013

Haider Ackermann’s collections are nothing short of perfection but typically look as though they require a team to drape, button, zip, and pull each look to make it appear as it was styled on the runway. For fall 2013 he opted for a few more user-friendly ensembles – like two dream collar-less fur coats and the most simple, sleek black velvet gown in the history of fashion (all pictured below) – giving women hope for a more simple season ahead.

Haider Ackermann Fall/Winter 2013

No one can compete with the house of Hermes when it comes to quality and craftsmanship. While it may have taken former Lacoste creative director, Christophe Lemaire a few seasons to find himself following Gaultier’s departure from the French house, his fall 2013 collection was the epitome of what a chic French woman – or any woman, for that matter – should wear each and every winter.

Hèrmes Fall/Winter 2013

As if Marc’s Olafur Eliasson-inspired show backdrop didn’t shine bright enough, the accompanying looks in his fall/winter 2013 collection were filled with boy shorts, pajama tops, oversized coats and floor-length dresses all made of shimmering fabrics and a never-ending string if sequins. My favorite evening look of the entire season (pictured below, middle) walked in the show and his makeshift-looking animal stoles were such fun amongst the abundance of more serious fall furs.

Marc Jacobs Fall/Winter 2013

I always love what Nicola Formichetti puts out for Mugler. This season, his soft color pallet and monochromatic, exaggerated skirt suits were futuristic classics in the making.

Mugler Fall/Winter 2013

No single designer can set a season’s trends quite like the brilliant Miuccia Prada. Her modern day Hitchcock show filled with pops of red, rich blues, oversized bags, unexpected fur cuffs and off-the-shoulder necklines epitomize chic for fall 2013.

Prada Fall/Winter 2013

Jack and Lazaro’s fall collection for Proenza Schouler was the perfect downtown meets uptown mix. Their muted color pallet of boyish, oversized separates were made lush by expensive fabrics and textures – leather, ostrich, fur, feathers and chains; their conservative heels will also make for the perfect shoes to run around in come fall.

Proenza Schouler Fall/Winter 2013

I have always been on the fence regarding Rodarte but Fall 2013 has converted me into a major believer. The entire show beginning with the dozens of monochromatic layers to sheer fabrics and colorful patters were made all the better when topped off by their incredible barbed wire accessories.

Rodarte Fall/Winter 2013