No one talks about sex like Christopher Kane. Especially, in fashion. Last year, his collection was inspired with Cynthia Payne, a South London brothel keeper who entertained the Members of Parliament in her suburban house, and John Kacere’s paintings portraying female bodies. Then, last season, Kane was obsessed with The Joy of Sex, the 70s of blockbuster that was all about illustrated sex education and evocative explanations. In a way, Christopher doesn’t go for straightforward, ‘sexy’ clothes, but goes deeper with the idea of sexiness. Spring-summer 2019 is no different. Titled as Sex in Nature, expect the most unexpected. The show starts and the soundtrack is on. The mating rituals of wildlife animals – as narrated by David Attenborough – are remixed with a recording of Marilyn Monroe speaking about her own sex symbol status. The clothes are equally surprising and multi-faceted. To-be sell-outs, the t-shirts, had such slogans as ‘Foreplay’ (depicting two tussling leopards), ‘Sexual Cannibalism’ (two mantises mating, where the female will devour the male later on) and ‘Horsepower’ (speaks for itself). But there were the less commercial pieces as well. Take the boxy mini-dress belted with a lace belt. Wait, is it made out of C-strings? Kane found that accessory in a sex shop in Tokyo, and here we are with the ‘aroused’ tongues on shoes, dress straps and bustiers made solely out of C-string-like elements. Something surprisiglt sexy was also there in that turquoise velvet dress and exaggerated, big, cheesy-chic diamonds that were used in jewellery, tops and prints. Sensuality, instincts, desire, pleasure. Christopher manages to plant all that in his fashion, and doesn’t get trapped by stereotypes or, simply speaking, by the commonly vulgar, over-sexualised notions.
Collage by Edward Kanarecki.