What better way to beat the January blahs than with fantasies of carnival season, bright fuzz and sparkle? Anthony Alvarez, a finalist for this year’s International Woolmark Prize, did just that with a cross-cultural collection inspired by carnival in New Orleans and Venice.
Alvarez, who was dressed in a fluffy, printed Baja-style hoodie backstage, said he was looking at “the mysticism, history, energy and aesthetic” of the two festivals that take place on opposite sides of the Atlantic and all they have in common.
He showed at the American Cathedral in Paris, a nod to the collection’s pre-Lent party atmosphere, and a suitably dour backdrop for all the bright colors and high shine.
Pink and blue sequin flames licked up the front of long tailored shirts, or down the sides of suit trousers, while abstract flower shapes wheeled across wide-leg denim.
Fluff and fuzz sprouted from a long, belted rainbow coat, and a lineup of leopard-spot jackets, while bright, embroidered diamond shapes, recalling the harlequin patterns on Venetian carnival costumes, popped across jackets and trousers.
Alvarez went big on shine, too, making silk jockey jackets from a patchwork of orange, red and yellow, and embedding lavender sequins into the slashed-up seams of workwear trousers.
His colorful creatures kept rocking down the church aisle in what seemed like an infinite celebration, with no Lenten season in sight.