Scene setting: The invitation for Dries Van Noten’s A/W 2016 show arrived as an official ticket printed by the Opéra National de Paris. Guests entered the Palais Garnier through the performer’s entrance, climbing a long row of creaky wooden stairs that are usually kept hidden, and left through the opulent marble clad front. The audience watched the show from the wings of the stage with its back turned to Marc Chagal’s infamous 1964 mural as the models walked around a vaulted arch from Robert Carsten’s set for Strauss’ Capriccio. As soon as the curtain was raised and the show was over there was a rush to capture the opera house’s exquisite empty interior; a fitting comedown after Van Noten’s opulent collection.
Mood board: The hallmarks of a solid Dries Van Noten offering were all here; pinstriped bomber jackets and cargo pants, split trench coats and military badges, embroidered suit jackets – the impeccable combination of bohemian and punk. This season the collection ushered in a Nineties revision of wavy Sixties psychedelia.
Team work: Van Noten commissioned the American artist Wes Wilson to rework the original psychedelic typeface that he first popularised in the mid Sixties. A repeat print of his undulating line-drawn faces was applied across parkas, duffle coats and trousers.