February 12, 2008
Roksanda Ilincic escaped to Brasília at Christmas, and she returned with a memory full of Oscar Niemeyer's extraordinary architectural shapes, vistas of waterfalls, and brilliant flashes of tropical color. "When I came back, my collection became more sculptural," Ilincic said. "I wanted to contrast soft with hard, and put in those splashes of green, pink, and orange you see in Brazil." The arcing shapes came through in soaring shoulders and the faceted standout panels that jutted from the hips or contained color-blocked zones of satin in bodices; the flashes of neon were in contrasting sashes, or a pouf of bright ostrich feather. One head-turner was Ilincic's first fur, a dyed silver fox with vast, upspringing poufs on the shoulder, tied in the middle with a succulent pink satin belt. Still, although Ilincic is smart to experiment with new kinds of structure, her technique remains a work in progress. As it turned out, the dresses she had most control over were her looping, fluid togas, pieces whipped up with a spontaneous freehand ease that, in one casea length of orange charmeuse satin tethered with a pink ribbonlooked stunning.