Miguel Adrover, one-time messiah and part-time pariah of the New York fashion world, returned to the tents with a collection entitled "thesurrealrealworld." Divided into nine sections, the show opened with a face- and body-painted model who walked down a darkened runway to the sound of cicadas and the artificial lightning of a corps of paparazzi. From there, Adrover took his audience on a continent-hopping jaunt, finally returning to his aesthetic roots: tailored prep-school looks and uniforms, daring feats of drapery, and ingenious trompe l'oeil constructions.

Some of the show’s kookier experiments included a UPS man's exit onto the runway (thank you, sponsor), a model whose cape was actually a banner calling for “world peace, please,” and a man who carried the weight of the world on his shoulders (via a Tom Sawyer stick from which hung a cloth globe). Mixed in among these, though, were some moments of genuine euphoria. Adrover used shredded cloth and ribbons of lining tape to make beautiful, African-inspired, plume-like capes and jackets and skirts. There were draped, dress-like jumpsuits; dresses whose back panels tied in front, apron-style; and lots of classic American prep--impeccably tailored suits, coats, and elbow-patched blazers, paired with oxford shirts and khakis and wonderful knits.

Adrover himself took to the runway in what looked like a top, a vest, and two coats, but was in fact all one piece (there was also a female version). The most memorable exit—perfectly illustrating both the designer’s extreme lyricism and his technical expertise—was a dress that was also a ship: long, hand-painted with masts, and with a white sail/train rigged to the back.