Written by LEANNE ITALIE – Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) – In his first exhibition since 2019, Ralph Lauren turned a long room at the Museum of Modern Art into a cozy salon on Tuesday night to debut a lucrative collection of mostly black and white for men and women.
His models, including Gigi and Bella Hadid, wandered around the guests sitting on sofas and black upholstered chairs dressed in classic white pants and jackets, cocktail dresses and tight-fitting evening dresses with sequins. There were black leather things, stripes and a plaid in red and black, with a little equipment for horseback riding and ski jersey.
In his notes, Lauren acknowledged that the show of wealth for his fall-winter women’s collection, the upscale line and his latest high-end brand Purple Label for men, was conceived a few months before the war in Ukraine. At the time, he said, “The tragedy and devastation we are witnessing now was unimaginable.”
Guests were asked to dress up in cocktail dresses, sipping champagne and nibbling on snacks, while Jessica Chastain, Henry Golding, Janelle Monet, Mayor Eric Adams (in a hand-painted coat) and other celebrities photographed an unusually small contingent of photographers.
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Monáe performed for the last time when Lauren performed in September 2019 during New York Fashion Week, turning the Wall Street space into a jazz nightclub of years past. This time he missed the crazy fashion week in February and instead went off the calendar. After a pandemic break, he thought of intimate unity, erasing the crowd and indulging in a relaxed atmosphere amid coffee tables lined with books and art objects.
“This moment means a lot to me because it also means my return to New York. I haven’t been to New York since the last show, so it’s an honor for me to be here again, ”Monae said, this time a guest, not a singer, in an interview with The Associated Press.
Gigi opened the show in black pants and a black V-neck sweater adorned with the “RL” logo on a white button. Her sister wore a beautiful white evening dress with a cut neck and back.
One of Lauren’s evening dresses, black, was adorned with a silver New York skyline at the hem. Many of his models were in two-tone “spectator” shoes of contrasting black and white. Think F. Scott Fitzgerald and the Jazz Age.
Golding was also on the Lauren show in 2019. “It’s nice to see people’s faces, as if the world has shifted, and I think it’s time,” he told the AP.
Adams, the mayor since January, was in a black coat with a yellow panel on one side, painted with African masks, his miniature and a tiny street sign of New York.
“This is the new wardrobe of the mayor of New York,” he joked. “Our city is back. This is the capital of fashion. “
At the end of the show, after the final walk for his models, 82-year-old Lauren came out from behind the raised entrance platform and waved his hand, pausing for a moment to make it all clear.
“So, in the midst of this sadness, we are moving forward, united in our hope for peace and in our hope for an end to this pandemic and a return to being together,” he said in his notes. “I am so proud to share with you again not only the collection, but also the optimism to live with respect for the dignity of all.”
Associated Press writer John Carucci of New York contributed to this story.
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