MANIFESTO

#63

CHANGE OF SPACE

TOUCH OF CRUDE

2022.09.23

Text by Guia Ortolani

Reality becomes humanity in Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons’ Prada Women Spring/Summer 2023 collection, which presents gestures of reality through a sequence of reflections, refractions and observations.

At Fondazione Prada Deposit, the fashion show set, made in collaboration with AMO, is wrapped in black craft paper for the occasion, and there are cuts in the walls from which fragments of the short films directed by director Nicolas Winding Refn, with whom the two designers are developing a stimulating creative discourse. NWR explores women’s lives and modern fluid femininity, a theme that has always fascinated the brand.

For the Spring/Summer 2023 Collection, Prada and Simons a crude yet fragile femininity. In a reference to the set design of the runway space, a black paper-based panopticon, a sublimation of the domestic sphere, a paper-based fabric is used in a series of ripped, body-hugging dresses that appear intimate and impulsive, whose white outlines of the necklines and hems give them an unfinished, work-in-progress quality. Between the sphere of the unworked and the sensual, between delicacy and roughness, an emulsion of contrasts is created. The collection traverses different visions and realities, constantly playing with dissimilarity and paradox. Square minimal tailoring alternates with feminine nightgowns, with the logo triangle embroidered on the tulle neckline. Everything revolves around the concept of simplicity, without any complications.

“There is a sense of the life of women. Life and humanity crafts the clothes—not superficial embellishment, but traces of living, leaving marks. This idea of clothes shaped by humanity excites us.”

– Miuccia Prada

The silk duchesse nightgowns and dresses echo the brand’s iconic archives; the thin straps of lingerie dresses and delicate transparencies evoke feminine fragility, meeting with pouch jackets, misplaced ironing and missewn hems; incomplete skirts show torn cuts on the front, and dresses feature ripped slits, suggesting that raw edge, evoking a fragility.
Day and evening dresses contaminate each other, their respective signs and signifiers are transformed: elegant coats merge with leather jackets, tailoring borrows fabric drags. Garments for experiencing the intimacy of the home in delicate pastel tones merge with garments for the outdoors, blending distinct realities. Accessories are offered in antique nappa leather with patinated, pressed and crumpled surfaces used to reinterpret the archetypal and classic silhouettes of Prada bags. The surfaces are animated by human gestures in which traces of life shape the forms of the garments, while the design of the lines and folds capture their spontaneity, like memories of beauty embedded in the fabric. A sense of accidentality, synonymous with creative freedom, infuses the finest gestures with energy, making them acts of liberation.

“…more than any other collection, this one is filled with different views… different bodies of work, within a single body of work—shifting between disparate form languages.”

– Raf Simons

Once again The creative duo expressed their radical vision, when others create baggy, fluffy dresses, Prada proposes another uniform, going back to the minimal skinny, no-frills one-piece jumpsuit. Just as in real life, the collection observes and embraces unexpected dichotomies, exploring the antithesis between minimalism and decoration, between the occasion and the everyday.

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