September 11, 2006
Schwerpunkt, the brutal-sounding name Alexandre Plokhov gave his spring show, is actually quite benign. It means "focal point," and one thing you could most definitely say about Plokhov's new collection is that it was focused. After fall's tweedy detour, the designer went right back to his music tribes for inspiration. The graphic precision of New Wave was flagged by red accents in a predominantly dark collection. The detailingcap sleeves, narrow little button-downs or cuffs, kerchiefs, side-laced shoes, even the artistic bleach treatmentsalso evoked the pop revival that followed punk in the eighties (ex-Pistol Glen Matlock's Rich Kids, say), injecting some punch into Plokhov's usual lean, mean repertoire.
"Schwerpunkt" is also a World War II war game, and there was a hint of the military in funnel-necked tops and a parachute-strapped bomber. What stood out more were dandified, almost feminine flourishes, like the parka that tied at the side in a big bow, or the sheer white outfit that could have passed for Plokhov's take on the bridal rig that used to close a fashion show. That suggested elegant new leanings for Cloak. But it may be time to fine-tune the presentation. Plokhov's glaring mannequins stomping fast and furiously toward the ranks of cameramen made one feel we've passed this Punkt before.