MILAN (Reuters) – With Milan at her feet, designer Miuccia Prada unveiled her fluorescent and urban chic fall-winter collection on Thursday, in a high rise building towering over Italy’s fashion capital.
Prada, who is also co-chief executive of the eponymous luxury group, used Milan Fashion Week to continue her exploration of different facets of femininity, with designs that stood out with their bold colors and stark lines.
Clad in fluorescent pink, orange and green, Prada models danced on a shiny black floor to the rhythm of Blondie. Neon light installations of monkeys, dinosaurs, bananas and aliens playfully displayed outside the building could be seen from the floor to ceiling windows.
Prada hosted the show in the “Torre” building, a modern tower which will be the latest addition to the group’s “Fondazione Prada” art foundation project. The existing Fondazione buildings, once a gin distillery, were turned in the early 1990s into a space dedicated to contemporary art and culture.
“I wanted to have a little revenge on the artwork, occupying the space of the Fondazione with fashion,” Prada told reporters at the end of her show.
The new building will officially open during Milan’s design week, held annually in April, and will be used as an exhibition space.
Models walked with the city skyline and train tracks as a backdrop, wearing oversize nylon and neoprene coats with wide shoulders from which delicate transparent dresses and tulle skirts peeped. All the models wore brightly colored tulle bows around their necks.
“The idea is the constant struggle women have – a duality, between strength and having to protect yourself and what you like as a woman, such as sweetness and femininity,” the designer said.
She explained that the big sporty pieces wanted to symbolically defend the women wearing them while the light details were included for them to be able to express their womanhood.
Black technical material was juxtaposed with fuchsia, yellow and blue. Black stilettos and white boots were paired with fluorescent socks and gaiter-like legwarmers.
Transparent black tulle, decorated with sparkling beading or bright plastic flowers, gently covered tight sheath dresses, while plastic fringed mini-dresses in lime green and white glowed in the night-time setting.
“It’s about women being able to go out at night, even wearing super sexy clothes, without fear,” Prada said.
The collection was well-received by the public on Thursday evening, with the audience bursting into loud applause as the designer reached the runway at the end of the show.
But Prada also voiced concern about the high expectations set on fashion, which she said pushed designers “beyond their job” by the perceived need to engage in political and social issues through their clothes.
Reporting by Giulia Segreti, Editing by Rosalba O’Brien