Rick Owens has always moved to the beat of his own drum. Despite trends coming and going and the influence the rise of social media had on others in his peers, the Paris-based fashion designer has never strayed from his roots. Since launching his eponymous label in Los Angeles in 1994, Owens has continued to push the boundaries and create pieces that command attention due to his unique abstract, yet approachable avant-garde designs. Though he’s always been respected in the industry due to his creative vision, recently Owens’ designs have been moving more into the mainstream thanks to celebrities who are just now cottoning onto his pieces, no doubt excited by the increasingly impossible to find individuality of the brand. The likes of Kim Kardashian and Rihanna are regularly photographed wearing Rick Owens, while most recently Hollywood darling Timothée Chalamet layered the label’s menswear into his Met Gala look. A$AP Rocky was an early celebrity adaptor, rapping “Rick Owens usually what I’m dressed in” in his 2011 hit “Peso.”
To mark his return to the runway for the first time in 18 months, Owens took over the city’s centre, presenting his new collection with a backdrop of historic statues and marble stairs. As guests took their seats at the stunningly beautiful location on an uncharacteristically warm autumn day, smoke machines began filling the air in the middle of the set and loud music began blaring.
Opening the show there was no Hadid sister in sight. Rather, Owens enlisted performer, artist, designer and his personal business partner and wife Michèle Lamy to do the honours. Wearing top-to-toe black (but of course), Lamy walked in thigh-high snakeskin platform boots with a dress made up of an exaggerated leather skirt, a silver clasp and a long black train billowing behind her.
Following Lamy came an array of looks in the brand’s signature styles. But despite what the opening look might have you thinking, it wasn’t all gothic-adjacent (Owens has been dubbed both the ‘godfather of goth glam’ and ‘Lord of Darkness’ for a reason)—or even overwhelmingly black hues at all.
In fact, Owens filled the collection with shades of pink, neon yellow and red, colour blocking contrasting colours together, such as a huge bubblegum pink turtleneck jumper with a red flowing dress and darker pink platform shoes.
Elsewhere, came more of what Owens has come to be known for over his decades’ long career: sculptural gender-neutral silhouettes and his never-failing talent for cutting, draping and layering in the most perfect, wearable way.
Owens, forever a lover of the runway and of performance art, is clearly happy to be back where he, and his clothing, belongs.