The runway show that presents Louis Vuitton Men next season tells the story of growing up and the rites of passage from childhood to adolescence until arriving to adulthood, stages of life that we all share. The collection, created by the Maison’s creative team in collaboration with Kidsuper, is anticipated by Growing Up, the cinematic prelude that opens the défilé. The short film describes different stages, tracing scenes from childhood, adolescence and young adulthood and that connect to the visual elements on the runway. The models before the start of the presentation walk inside a home created for the occasion going through rooms representing the various stages of a child’s life. The garments worn and presented perfectly reflect the idea of evolution, introducing four macro themes that differ in colors, shapes and materials, emphasizing the message the creative team wants to communicate to the audience.
“Unity is forged from familiarity.
In the Men’s Fall-Winter 2023 collection, the most recognizable story ever told unfolds: growth.”
The first phase presented on the catwalk is the adolescent one, which brings with it the desire to grow up fast materialized in a faux-mature sartorial silhouette, recalling a young boy’s idea of paternal masculinity. The Studio proposes on the runway a line that is square but fluid at the same time, also using garments from the world of sportswear and workwear. Elements that identify with Kidsuper’s character, such as the stains of bright color on elegant suits that merge creating a perfect balance with elements of the creative team reminiscent of Virgil Abloh, inspiration also for the clean and tailored lines of long coats and oversize jackets. Garments are enriched by the abstract influences that embody the adult gaze, while others are computerized, as if viewed through the lens of the 90s by the early teens of the digital generation. Reflections of young people soon to grow up become written on the garments, including “blurry vision of a bright future” or the unknown “fantastic future?”. Starting with the first generation that grew up in the shadow of super connectivity, the Studio investigates and evaluates the impact of the digital age. Thoughts here are reflected in motifs, techniques and workmanship that refer to television, film, cyberspace, screens and cameras. Illusory designs, such as a pattern resembling encrypted coding, alternate with hallucinatory television embroideries made with pearls and sequins and then give way to an enlarged shape of an eye made with a textured fine-chenille that is difficult to decipher with the naked eye. The jacquard images evoke the impression of a stage of life that is running too fast, and which will soon regret the carefree youth. Alongside the attention with respect to computerization and to digital elements, the creative team offers clothes and bags structured from leather fragments printed with scans of letters actually written by Studio members in the multitude of languages of their nationalities.
Continuing in the collection camouflage patterns appear, an element developed in collaboration with Colm Dillane in different colors, which reveal faces drawn on the front of the jackets. The human brain is in a constant search for connection leading it to see illusory human faces in faceless objects and elements. Louis Vuitton applies this mechanism to garments and accessories, projecting giant eyes and images with a high-engagement effect onto garments as the ultimate expression of connection. These unidentified artworks are transformed into adapted prints with the inclusion of the monogram pattern as the conclusion of the collection. The color gray prevails in the opening of the show, alternating solid-colored suits and coats with colorful brushstrokes and very long and tight leather coats that deviate slightly from the oversize silhouettes that characterize the entire runway show. Later on, the use of tone of cream and green used to enrich the patterns of bomber jackets also comes into play, while it is burgundy that catches the eye, becoming the main color of the second part of the collection, which turns for the conclusion into shades of brown. Accessories also play a key role in the coming season. Bags enrich the looks and in some cases become the protagonists: mini bags give way to maxi sizes that also come to be real duffel bags and backpacks covered totally with the brand’s logo. Tote bags and shoppers present the patterns depicted on the garments of the fashion show, in particular the audience’s attention is focused on the camouflage pattern and modern accessories with square shapes that present the design of icons that have marked the history of the brand. Headgear similar to helmet, classic buckets alternate to flashy fur and leather balaclava hats, a material also proposed for elegant and long gloves paired with tank tops or short-sleeved sweaters.
The soundtrack accompanying Louis Vuitton Men FW23 collection is an entire live performance by Spanish artist Rosalia, the show’s musical curator. An oversized hooded puffer and a very loose trouser tightened on the hips by a rope make up her total white look, which immediately grabs the audience’s attention as they see her sitting on the roof of a 1970s Cadillac Coupe de Ville stained bright yellow and placed in front of the house. The set design was researched and created entirely by the short film’s directors themselves, Michel and Oliver Gondry, a French duo known for their visual innovations for cinema, documentaries, music videos and commercials. The proposed house is steeped in memories of the two brothers’ childhood; the bedroom they shared growing up, the excitement of decorating with the wallpaper covered then with doodles, just as it happens during the fashion show with phrases written by models and the Spanish singer. The collection includes garments loaded with messages and meanings, proposing a theme known and dear to everyone, making the audience reflect on their personal stages of growing up. From childhood to adolescence, which one would like to outgrow in a very short time, one arrives at adulthood, shaped by the memories and the experiences of the early stages of life lived until that moment, and especially by the inner child that remains eternally present in each of us.