To present their archive-based Kenzo La Collection Memento No. 3, Humberto Leon and Carol Lim held a dinner party at La Monnaie de Paris. Lavishly themed in ode to Kenzo Takada’s obsession with “Le Douanier” Rousseau, specifically his work “The Dream,” the production was full of greenery and tropicana. The tables were set with a lush, artistic botanical spread — whole pomegranates cracked open, beet lollipops, chicory — everything was edible if you could figure out how to eat it. White-gloved waiters circled the room carrying reproductions of Rousseau’s jungle works.
In between the models wearing multicolored striped knits and skirts, jacket and pants bearing jungle scenes, there were models actually dressed like big potted plants, their leaves and branches grazing guests’ heads as they squeezed through the tables. One female model walked naked, her natural silhouette emphasized by body paint, her hair plaited, as if the women in “The Dream” had emerged from the painting to do a few laps around the room and be immortalized on Instagram.
Different brands have different branding strategies. Leon and Lim’s has long been to create a memorable experience in which the clothes play a supporting role. The lead mementos from Wednesday night’s dinner party were the walking foliage and naked lady, while the stripes and tapestry knits were the understudies.