Is there Any other Fashion Label on Earth that commands such Introspection and Intellectual Discourse as Miuccia Prada's Eponymous Label does with each new collection presented? Deciphering the Layers of Subtext and Contextualization is Par for the Prada Course. Miuccia Invites Lofty Debate, because that's how she lives with her collections, they occupy space directly next to her own Constantly Evolving and Revolving mind and because of that, the Concept sometimes becomes the Context and the Art of the Clothing is lost. Fall 2014 Wobbled Dangerously on that line.
Prada referenced many influences, as always, There were splicings of Fassbinder and Pina Bausch, Cecil B. De Mille's "Cleopatra" and Marlene Dietrich in "The Blue Angel" and another movie reference "The Bitter Tears of Petra Von Kant." All these PLUS Weimar and Art Deco and to My eyes, Another Layer of the Germanic, Fosse's Portrayal of Sally Bowles in "Cabaret" which was perhaps in itself a Fusion of one or more of these influences, all seemed to Coalesce together into one of Prada's more Enigmatic shows of late. Where as for Spring, It was so Direct as to slap you in the Face, Here there was an Indirectness that was also Quite Upfront and Brash, But in a More Sly way than Spring. Almost, and definitely Lending towards Prada's plays of Subtext and Subversion, Faux Indirectness.
This played out in Loose, Louche Shift dresses that Defiantly Counterpointed themselves after the first dress which was in a Gunmetal Satin that was Very 20's In it's Shape, by being the exact Diametric opposite of what the dresses were suggesting. The Shift dress was meant to Imply the Body underneath it's looseness, A Suggestion. Prada Threw that Shit Straight out the Window and in a Perverse Inversion, Made the Shift COMPLETELY Sheer! This perhaps was one of her Greatest triumphs of the collection for with all that Fassbinder and Weimar and "Cleopatra" Twaddle going on, Prada Truculently Subverted that all with something that was Outrageously Opposed to the times she was Channeling!
Taking that into consideration, there was a Frisson of the Unhinged here, But the overwhelming effect was, to be honest, that Prada was Grasping at straws to make a Rather Boring collection more interesting with layers and layers of Reference and Subtext. If one had simply walked into the show the moment it had started and had not a Program or a Conversation with Miccuia, They would take away what? Some Sheer Dresses under some Sweetly Tailored and Kooky Jackets and Coats, A Bit of Satin with a YSL/DVF 1970's Feel of Loucheness, Some Deco Prints under some David Byrne/Talking Heads Coats with Wide Shoulder pads... and what else.... pretty much nothing! if one looked Hard enough they may have gotten the Fassbinder moments had they any knowledge of him, they may have gotten the "Cabaret"/Weimar thing more directly, but all the other stuff... Not even a Blip!
So, Prada produced as always, when one took the time to dig deeper, a Subtext Festival... AS ALWAYS! But the clothes that were it's Supporting Players, Didn't live up to the Intellectual Intrigue. As Clothes, they were a little Off-Kilter and Subtly Shocking. And in this Day and Age, That a Designer can continue in new ways to Shock with old tropes, That's WAY More Interesting than 42 Layers of Inspiration and Subtextualized Content!