Milan Menswear: Prada, Forever Young
A Prada show is never just about the clothes. There’s something happening on the walls, the floor, the soundtrack. It’s not always obvious what it is, but you can’t help but sense it’s there. Tonight, for the dual presentation of Prada’s fall looks for men and pre-fall for women, one wall piece listed ten key turning points in the last decade (9/11, the launch of Facebook, American Idol‘s debut, and so on). There was a huge weird splodge of green resin on the floor, and a big circular bar (yellow) in the middle of the room. And DJ Frederic Sanchez, who has always provided the music for Prada’s shows, was mixing live, shading electro into rave into indie and back again, a quick-fire tumble of tracks that could easily have been the musical education of kids growing up in the English Midlands during the eighties and nineties.
But the clothes offered no resolution at all to the mystery, suggesting instead those same kids on a night out a whole decade earlier. For the boys, that meant tan tab-front pants, cropped jumpers, and a smart navy blazer, or a cropped peacoat in navy melton; a belted cardigan in a mélange knit; or a moleskin coat with a double collar, knit and shearling. Shoes were shiny, with a big tongue, like a golf cleat, a typically idiosyncratic offering in a season when other designers seem taken with the boot, combat, biker, or otherwise. But Mrs. Prada is famous—notorious, even—for moving from season to season without a backward glance at what’s come before. If there was any connective thread with her last men’s collection for Spring, it could only have been in the emphasis on youth, meaning that this collection was, quite literally, younger than springtime. How will it play? We may have heard an early warning sign in the plaintive bleat of a departing acolyte, barely more than a boy himself, noting that the clothes made him feel old. On the other hand, as the audience filed out, one last wall piece blared “TO BE CONTINUED…” in huge block letters. Reassurance, perhaps?
See more pictures of the Prada Fall 2010 show here.