(Step dancers from New York and Washington D.C. in formation at the Rick Owens Paris Fashion Week show)
As a designer, some of Rick Owens’ collections are just a few asymmetrical hemlines away from a Tatooine executioners convention. But his business acumen and creative focus is admirable…and what Rick Owens did this week at his Paris fashion show is incredible.
The show featured all female step dancers instead of traditional models. So instead of a sea of lily-white (with a rare fleck of brown, black and yellow) rib cages, there were bodies of color, and in a range of shapes and sizes. And instead of the usual dour-face, vacant stares, and stork-like prancing seen on all the other runways, these women were stomping, scowling, and signaling…unfazed by all the fancy pinched powerbrokers staring at them from the front row. And by the end of the show, both the designer, his models and many of the audience were in tears.
According to reports, Owens and his team sourced competitive step teams from the web: The Washington Divas, Momentum, and Zetas, all from Washington, D.C., and The Soul Steppers from New York.
Janille Hill, 30, who lives in Harlem, says her step dance group started working on the performance last May. But she didn’t quite believe it would happen until the plane ticket was in her hand. “It’s like, a designer in Paris who wants to do step?” she said, wiping tears from her cheeks.
Mr. Owens found them on Google. “I thought putting that on a Paris runway was just the sort of collision I love,” he said. (via Wall Street Journal)
More video and photos from the Rick Owens Paris Fashion Show…
After the jump