June 25, 2014 Paris
Some would say an equally natural appetite for the outré informs Ackermann's own work. His brocades; velvets; long, flowing layers; and exaggerated proportions speak of dandified languor. The silky embroidered robe over striped pants sported by model Scott Barnhill in this latest presentation summed up the look perfectly. But the new edge sharpened the silhouette a little. Op art checks, black vinyl pants, and a gold velvet baseball jacket were, if not exactly rock 'n' roll, at least a little more kick-ass than usual. "The freedom that people like Keith Richards, Iggy Pop, and Robert Mapplethorpe had gave me energy," Ackermann explained. "They took risks we're not capable of taking." He's clearly fascinated by such a thought. His models were posed like exotic specimens in a zoo, shuffling a little awkwardly under the gaze of the invited audience. But even if Ackermann's inspirations represent a kind of wish fulfillment for him, they don't infuse his work with enough passion to be truly persuasive. The wind that was blowin' today was not the wind of vital change.