Viktor & Rolf mixes Picasso and polo shirts for Spring Summer 2016 haute couture
Dutch fashion house Viktor & Rolf has continued its "wearable art" theme with an haute-couture collection of sculptural white garments made from Cubist facial features.
Viktor & Rolf's The Performance of Sculptures was shown yesterday at Paris' Palais de Tokyo, during the city's haute-couture fashion week.
The Spring Summer 2016 range builds on previous art-influenced collections, including last season's wearable paintings and an earlier range of garments based on Van Gogh artworks.
The starting point for the most-recent collection was the simple white polo shirt, which the designers fused with the work of another famous artist: the Spanish Cubist, Pablo Picasso.
"This season, the collection explores the idea of the archetypical white polo shirt meeting Cubism," said a statement from Viktor & Rolf, which decided to drop its ready-to-wear lines to focus on couture and perfume last year.
Parading to a choral rendition of Radiohead's 1993 track Creep, the first models appeared in polo-collared dresses with short sleeves and oversized buttons.
Mismatched facial features and body parts stuck onto, or cut out from, the fabric created abstract portraits.
Each of the garments was made entirely from a white technical piqué – a cotton material woven with fine ribbing, creating a magnified eyelet structure.
As the performance progressed, the simple looks gave way to more and more sculptural garments.
The additions became larger and more exaggerated, with waves of material representing hair extended from shoulders and partially covering faces.
"The designs blur the boundaries between garment and sculpture, and question the relationship between wearer and clothing, sometimes overtaking the body and obscuring the face of the wearer," said Viktor & Rolf.
Asymmetric silhouettes and frilled hems were combined to give a "spontaneous, thrown-together look".
"The effect of rapid improvisation is deceptive however: every seemingly random cut, blotch or chip is meticulously hand finished," the house said.
Gradually exaggerated, the later designs fully masked the models – who could only see the catwalk through subtle perforations in the fabric.
Some looks incorporated a number of Cubist faces into single outfits, either side by side to form extra-wide pieces or stacked up like the faces found on totem poles.
The final garment features the shape of a standard polo shirt mounted high above where the wearer's head would be, on top of layered portions.
To complete the styling, the all-white garments were juxtaposed with black boots from UK footwear brand Dr Martens.
A capsule collection derived from the haute-couture designs – comprising a white technical piqué polo dress, tunic and polo shirt – will be available for pre-order from luxury online fashion retailer Moda Operandi on 30 January 2016. Prices will range from €800 (£610) to €2,800 (£2,100).
The fashion house, founded by Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren in 1993, has previously worked with Studio Job to create the scenography for a number of its shows.
The company opened its first flagship store in Paris in 2013, which was covered in grey felt by Architecture & Associés.