If last season's Viktor & Rolf runway show was a rejection of the ever-quickening pace of fashion, the duo's new Web show, which Style.com exclusively previewed in advance of its October 2 debut on the label's Web site, was a proposal for an alternative. No invitations, no seating charts, no traffic jams, no endless wait. Not that creating the ten-minute video saved them much money: It took two-and-a-half days to shoot Shalom Harlow and a team of 57 to insert her along with her clones along the virtual runway. At the finale, the "models" stood in an array clapping before dissolving into so many pixels and evaporating into the digital ether.
Pixelation gave Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren a starting point for the collection, which, at just 21 looks, felt a bit slim. On the obvious side was a white T-shirt with a pixelated dragon on it; more abstract and fabulous were the trio of Swarovski crystal-banded dresses accented with candy-striped rills of organza. (Speaking of man hours, those three frocks took four weeks each to hand-make.) Somewhere in the middle of the literal-to-conceptual spectrum were supersized versions of those organza rills on a dramatic cocktail dress, and various experiments in volume (a solid black coat and a dress in spicy shades of yellow, orange, and red that expanded and contracted in droopy tiers down the body). Many looks were shown with futuristic black-and-white tights.
So does the Web show have legs? In our new economy, it's a proposition worth pursuing, but for this collection, the cool concept overshadowed the too-few clothes.