Everything (and this encompasses a very large spectrum) that Karl Lagerfeld does is not so much about theory in itself, but rather, execution. He asks questions—usually contemporary ones, like globalization, ecology, future, heritage, marriage equality—and then draws the start of an answer. This season, Lagerfeld was inspired by art and designed 85 masterfully executed looks and 75 pieces of art all referencing the Chanel universe. Was this gesture of grandiose proportions ironic? No doubt about it. Fashion and art have been colliding for decades, reaching an all-time high with Andy Warhol. As opposed to Prada, Karl was never famous for collecting art or even collaborating with artists, as is now a tradition at Louis Vuitton. Rather, Lagerfeld’s hobbies of choice are books, music, and jewelry. In fact, he is an artist of a different kind and Chanel is perhaps his greatest masterpiece. In front of the oversized logo built in resin or the sinking bottle of No. 5, guests—Katy Perry, included—lined up to have their photo taken.
The models walked to Jay-Z’s Picasso Baby. And while some could have expected an “artsy” or “conceptual” collection, what we saw was, in fact, the opposite. In a literal way, Lagerfeld was inspired by the world of art and especially what surrounds the white canvas. This season, the Chanel girl is a youthful looking student going to art school with her graffiti backpack slung over her shoulder, double pearled choker looking like a set of headphones, or massive portfolios tucked under her arm. Her base look is a black or bleached blond bobbed wig, eyeshadow applied like strokes from a paintbrush and modular sock-shoes. The colors followed that youthful vibe with bubblegum and violent pink, baby blue, magenta, primary yellow, silver, and traditional black and white. The iconic tweed came in pastel colors and sleeveless jackets and was cut as a crop top.
Not only was the runway deliciously pretty, but this season, all the garments were wearable. Here, the apparent practicality of fashion came face-to-face with the factual nonserviceability of art. From form-fitting tweed jackets, to lace-trimmed silk camisoles, crystal-encrusted evening dresses, and dresses made of pleated strips woven together, this was one of our favorite Chanel collections in a long time. Art has turned out to be a powerful inspiration for Lagerfeld, inciting him to also produce interesting accessories. Middle East: prepare for an avalanche of pantoned Chanel bags and multicolored glitter shoppers.