Tableau vivant, tableau vibrating
This season, Julien Dossena transports his Paco Rabanne vision over a vast colorful surface overlooking the Mediterranean. There, on the roof of the Congress Center, Victor Vasarely’s Hexa Grace becomes the scene of a collection radiating sensuality.
Whether it is this large-scale public installation composed of 24,000 diamonds or its abstract paintings characteristic of the ‘Op Art’ movement, Vasarely’s works of the 1960s and 1970s are naturally in tune with paco Rabanne’s radical art that took shape at the same time. Immediately recognizable, the artist’s geometric language was transcribed – without modification – on jacquards, prints, and meshes, and placed on the body in such a way as to reinforce the effect of optical illusions.
Precise and relaxed, the glittering and dynamic pieces of the collection are carried in cleverly thought-out overlays. Materials and patterns are matched, maximizing effect and minimizing eccentricity. Elongated silhouettes highlight the body in a spirit of relaxation: dresses, XXL vests, tunics, and smocked blouses and skirts are alternately worn with sarouels, flared or puffy pants.
“Since this is now our main collection, there was a desire to explore graphic design through a range of ideas,” said Julien Dossena. “These looks emit both a vibration and a tactile aspect that give them a lot of texture.”
Thus, draped pieces are enhanced with chains integrated into necklaces or belts attached to skirts. The metal mesh is again reimagined on fluid tops and overskirts with cascading fringes, while the long skirts are lined with a gradient of golden glitter. Vasarely-style peas appear on laser-treated denim – these pieces are enriched with concentric metal eyelets. Detailed prints of geometric thoughts and shapes like scorched by the sun are arranged rhythmically, while a seventies-inspired sunflower print and a vaguely vintage monogram overlay each other for a modern look. The lurex – on a heavier jacquard and on fluid velvet – is counterbalanced by natural macramé inlaid with silver beads.
From the feet to the head, the pieces in this collection reflect the many facets of summer. The patterned bobs and caps confirm the nonchalant attitude of the looks. The reimagined Paco Rabanne hooves are back this season, while compensated sandals highlight the leg thanks to a grid of laces – another graphic expression of the collection.
Among all the motifs, one of Vasarely’s works entitled The Kiss, rarer and more figurative, was placed on an embroidery of sequins. Faces and hands declined in silver and gold meet, as just before or after an embrace.
“I was thinking not only of the optical effects, but also of the synaesthetic sensations of summer – the sound of waves on the shore, the sun warming the skin, the reflection of light on the water,” explains Julien Dossena. “And I wanted to retranspose these stimulations in an immediate, immersive, and sensual way.”
All images courtesy of Paco Rabanne
Creative Direction: Julien
Dossena Styling: Marie-Amelie Sauvé
photographer Yannis Vlamos
Make up: Pat McGrath Hair: Duffy Location: “Hexa Grace” by Victor Vasarely, 1979 (Monaco)