The Brazilian designer Alexandre Herchcovitch is big on theatrics. Two seasons ago, he introduced his line in New York by building a garden on the runway. His sophomore collection featured live musicians trailing every model. This spring, he combined his favorite flourishes by using flowers, in the form of botanical prints, and a live performance from the Brooklyn-based neo-tropicalia freak-funk band Animal Collective.
While the production and the clothes delivered the drama, the collection fell short in the wearability department. Puffy, tiered dresses layered over patterned tops and cinched with wide leather belts. Mad mixes of psychedelic florals with Mary Quant-style daisies (featured on a rubber skirt) clashed with an op print (whipped up into a wonderful belted trench) and a few plaids, thrown in for good measure. This collection was a trip, in every sense of the word. Even the band, surrounded by Plexiglas mushrooms, sang about hallucinogenic pills. Herchcovitch cited the "freedom movement" as his inspiration, and he succeeded in conveying a sartorial sort of sixties psychedelia, however out of step it may be with the prevailing minimal mood.
Let's hope Herchcovitch bought a round-trip ticket, and that when this journey ends, he'll return to pursue his exuberant visions with a bit more temperance.