By Liza Foreman
Prada Spring-Summer 2014
Britney Spears is not the first person you think of when wandering between the stucco-covered, old-world facades of Milan, the Italian fashion capital, where the upscale worker-bees wander around in bespoke suits.
But inside of the Prada Spring Summer 2014 ready-to-wear show, Spears’ “Work Bitch” set the tone for another scene altogether, a mad-world created in a fit of inspiration by Miuccia Prada, with the back up of a group of muralists who created a louder-than-life set played back in the, well, playful outfits.
Images from the muralists explored ideas of femininity and power in murals that were inspired, actually, by political wall art from Mexican muralists, a la Diego Luna.
The show space was set up as a streetscape, created around a central island where the expressionistic art played loud and colorful, like the clothes.
Prada dubbed the project “In The Heart of the Multitude.”
It was a collection filled with loud primary colors, seemingly inspired by the garish colors of footballer’s match kits – think a red sporty dress over a green ribbed vest-style T-shirt, complete with plays on footballer socks worn by the models, and the stripes that might run down the side of a player’s shorts, but here were featured across the waistline of dresses or around the neckline.
Perhaps a Mexican street kid with football dreams lurked in the background?
Then there were the political-art, street-art inspired faces emblazoned across fun furry coats and sporty dresses, and decorative elements that looked as if they were made using a touch of left-over Christmas tree tinsel.
Sparkling brassiers resembled a cheeky designer version of a belly dancer’s bra, but worn here over fun dresses or on top of a khaki-colored prep girl’s winter coat.
But then these were not girls that spent hours worrying about their underwear. They were here to kick it, wearing footballer inspired socks-turned-leggings that ran like a dancer’s warm-up kit from the ankle to the knee.
Prada featured a play on the brassier throughout, be it in cut out shapes included as a swirl of color in a series of sporty looking dresses, some seemingly bejeweled in sparkling necklace-like patterns, or sweatshirts where the pattern of a bra was cut out in different bold shades.
Models clutching girlie bags and wore dead-pan expressions.
Faces like Pierre Mornet’s (one of the six artists) “Trois Femmes” could be found turning the corner of a skirt or looking the viewer face on from the center of a dress.
The collection was a walking update on a sort of pop-art inspired, political-art themed show with playful ornamentation, that worked on one level as think piece on women and politics and women and what they wear.
Remember when the feminists burned their bras!
The clothes were filled with rich imagination, and some of the combination of designs and materials that made up a dress or a coat looked like a patchwork piece of walking art, or a rare piece of old-world tapestry with an updated look.
Think a dress with a green sparkling top half combined with a mural of a face that cut through the center of the dress, which ended in a black embroidered-style panel leading to a sporty striped hem-line above the knee.
A version of this story first appeared on TheFashionBeast.com