With the explosive crash of waves on rocks, the Missoni show today launched into a meditation on the elements—earth, air, fire, and water. Angela Missoni, head wrapped in a scarf, appropriately looked a bit like a voodoo queen backstage. But she was quick to point out that Missoni's elements were abstract rather than primal. More pop, like a Japanese comic. So the classic Missoni chevron was reinterpreted as waves or birds, the way you drew waves or birds when you were a kid. The family name was also reconfigured in a black-and-white, semi-African pattern that, laser-cut out of PVC and applied all over the place, was almost as artful an exercise in logomania as Alexander Wang's AW lace in New York.
A subliminal strand of exotica trailed through the collection: a skirt tied like a sarong, a fitted dress draped like a sari, caftanlike volumes. There were hot-colored, loom-knit stripes that felt Mexican. But somewhere between the elongated pencil skirts with the deep kick pleat and the dégradé fringed pieces, Missoni edged into a land of confusion. Angela effectively evolved the family business once before, taking those primal genetic strands and literally reweaving them for now. Maybe it's time for her to do it again.