In Defense of John Galliano
Recently, I came across a blogger ridiculing John Galliano’s Spring ’08 Menswear collection. “Any person picked randomly off the streets could throw together a collection like this,” wrote one commenter. Naturally, I was AGHAST. As you may know, The Cult reveres Mr. Galliano’s contribution to fashion, so a defense of our reverence was immediately in order.
Certainly, I can see how fashion lovers of pedestrian tastes might find Galliano a bit inaccessible. He is among the designers that consistently achieve the reminder that fashion is so much more than mall culture and celebrity worship. That is, it can be. Like in any form of art, fashion can serve as a retrospective, a mirror, or a crystal ball for the world at large. Galliano’s Spring 2008 menswear collection seems to reflect the current climate of the world and even glance a ways into the future.
Shirtless, tanned, and slightly dirty, models wear fatigues and newsprint with scarves around their faces.
Scarves move from the face to the head, looking very much like the traditional middle-eastern headdress. Note the cigars.
Berets and shades. The obvious casting of the segment of the collection made it clear that the show meant to recall the Black Panthers. In this case, though, I think the focus is on the militial, not the racial, aspect of the story he is telling.
And then the fringe. These are the ones that refuse to choose any side. Note the neon pink and the grafitti-clad limbs.
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