With men’s fashion week in Paris five months in the rearview mirror, it’s easy to forget that Celine had canceled its spring 2024 show amid unrest in the French capital following the police killing of a teenager.
The death had spawned several nights of rioting, looting and violence, prompting the LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton-owned brand to scrub its July 2 fashion event and after party, both meant to take place at La Gaité Lyrique, a concert hall and event space.
Among those scheduled to perform that night were Peaches, Yves Tumor, Model/Actriz, The Last Dinner Party, Girl_irl and Fcukers.
According to Celine, its artistic and image director Hedi Slimane returned to the venue the same month to film his models storming through a gleaming golden corridor looking every skinny inch like rock stars of yore with their tight leather pants, and shirts or blousons as sparkly as mirror balls.
Slimane released the film on Tuesday, splicing in scenes of ballet dancer Laurids Seidel leaping up a storm at the Opéra de Monte-Carlo, and a caped figure rotating atop Le Grand Rex cinema and concert venue in Paris, rebranded with Celine logos up in lights.
Slimane chopped the 10-minute film into about a million pieces, a workout for the eye muscles, while stretching out the 2005 LCD Soundsystem track “Losing My Edge” for the duration.
The collection felt like the greatest hits from one of the most influential menswear designers of the new millennium, chockablock with the black suits, white shirts and skinny ties Slimane pioneered at Dior Homme earlier in his career. The French designer also seemed to invent a new runway posture involving hands thrust as deeply into jacket pockets as possible.
He peppered his handsome tailoring with feminine flourishes, including a host of sculptural halter tops and bustiers, big satin bows, puff sleeves and off-the-shoulder necklines that winked to 17th-century French court dress.
Notes distributed in tandem with the film, titled “Delusional Daydream,” detail the heel popularized by Slimane in 2005, and the return of his “shiny effects” from the early 2000s.
Slimane had documented New York’s emerging art scene in the early 2000s, and he returned at the end of pandemic lockdowns to witness its revival and shoot portraits of alternative musicians, artists and club kids. Hence the film can be read as a tribute to that raw energy, and the young, artistic crowds he finds inspiring.
According to Celine, the spring collection should arrive in stores in one month, which means just in time to be one of the coolest, shiniest characters congregating in New York’s Dimes Square on New Year’s Eve before heading off to the Brooklyn clubs.