Isa Arfen spring/summer 2017 collection presentation for LFWLondon Fashion Week SS17
On the top floor of the abandoned Old Truman Brewery in Shoreditch, something strange is taking place. The floor is divided into squares using white tape, inside each of which a scene is being played out. A trio of girls plait each others’ hair, another hangs stockings on a washing line, a fifth lounges on a deckchair, lazily jiggling her zebra kitten-heeled foot. It’s rather like a living doll house has been deconstructed and the scenes from each room placed in the same loft space – although on repeat, as though there is only a minute’s footage of each scene. This is the Isa Arfen SS17 presentation.
The press release describes the collection as “Grace Jones in Keith Haring body paint”. I’m not sure I’d quite go Grace Jones (maybe Kate Bush?), but the concept is a wonderful one. The collection itself is not particularly drastic in terms of pattern and shape – the trousers are classic high-waisted peg leg, the tops largely ballet-style bodies and skirts long and a-line – but the prints and palette are dazzling.
References to Pina Bausch on the press release would explain some of her elegant classic silhouette choices; however designer Serafina Sama has drawn on a range of influences for this season’s prints, including the Omo Valley tribes and early 1960s portraits of Malian women. Perhaps this is where the softly pleated ruffle hems and earthy ochre tones came from, along with the domesticated, typically mid-20th century presentations of women in their individual scenes. Given the relief offered by the block colour pieces, Sama’s more decorative pieces would make beautiful statement elements of an outfit. As seen in DAKS collection this season and the emphasis on animal print at Topshop Unique, tribal looks set to make its way back into both designer and high street shops come spring.
Photos: Krisztian Pinter
For further information about Isa Arfen visit here.