Nature versus Nurture, Mary Katrantzou's inspiration for Spring/Summer 2012 is the contrast between natural and man-made, artificial against organic, industrial fabrication vs the inherent beauty of nature.
Imagine the change encounter of a crushed cadillac and a field of wildflowers at the bottom of the pacific ocean: industrial and natural juxtaposed, still separate but in perfect synergy.
The basis for the prints this time are tin cans, metal drums, microphones and car parts. 'Natural' prints are derived from the scales of fish and frogs, birds' plumage, coral reefs, cherry blossom trees, repeats of branch and foliage and finally, armies of flowers marching across every surface.
Color is eye-popping, saturated, print drenching the models from top to toe. Garment or fabric, every inch is smothered in pattern. Embroidery, beading and applique pop flat surfaces into three dimensions. Metallic shards leap from printed backgrounds sparkling with precious Swarovski Crystal Elements, vegetation is reworked in bugle fringe. Legs are rising from banks of thick embroidery clasping the ankles of metallic Christian Louboutin heels.
This season, Katrantzou's vision engulfs not only her clothes but her venue as well. Flowers leap from the clothes to the catwalk, combined with metal in a site-specific installation as background to her latest aesthetic experiments.
The result is stunning. Man meets machine meets Mother Earth. An army of petal, metal and print. True flower power.
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