Another collection from Roksanda Ilincic, another modern-art primer. This time, the designer name-checked Jessica Stockholder and Mel Bochner, both known for their emphatic use of color (she clarified her interest in early-period Bochner, not his text-heavy Blah Blah Blah works). But in the same breath, she also noted how the hodgepodge beauty of Brazilian favelas helped build the ideal tension of high and low, arty and craft. Basically, Ilincic was defining assemblage on her own terms; it was there in the clear PVC textile punctuated with three-dimensional embroidery and in the no-holds-barred patchwork coat of shearling, fox, mink, and curly lamb's wool.
For all the jumble—most jumbled of all were the assorted plastic pieces that rained down like confetti on Ilincic's final looks—the collection expressed consistency of form and function. Cropped, cuffed pants were generous without being overly mannish, and unstructured coats had enveloping appeal. Things became slightly trickier, however, when she deliberately misaligned hems; it's a device she has explored in the past that can prove conceptual to a fault. Still, some women will rise to this silhouette challenge because they identify with Ilincic's sophisticated eccentricity—in her rhapsodic application of felted wool and her now-signature elongated silhouettes. For everyone else, there are easy-entry-point knotted pochettes and striped-soled pointy loafers (kudos yet again to Nicholas Kirkwood).
The collection's color scheme—claret, melon, powder, and gray dominated by an accord of blues—was repeated in an installation of Tetris-like pieces by the artist Gary Card, apparently completed in less than twenty-four hours. Ilincic said she is confident betting on blue and burgundy now that she can showcase her complete aesthetic within her first boutique, opening on Mount Street soon enough. The collection will look great in situ…as long as she makes it clear that people are in a store, not a gallery.