Connectivity is the catalyst for creativity. Louis Vuitton is driven by a community of creatives, whose individualities, talents and experiences converge in the ongoing artistic dialogues that unfold on its runways. The Fall-Winter 2023 Men’s Collection builds on this foundation in the curation of a creative collective. Designed by the Louis Vuitton Studio Prêt-à-Porter Homme, the collection is embedded with the ideas and concepts of the American designer Colm Dillane, while the show design and its cinematic prelude are directed by the French filmmakers Michel Gondry and Olivier Gondry. They enter into a conversation with the Sierra Leonean stylist Ibrahim Kamara and the Ukrainian creative director Lina Kutsovskaya, both longtime collaborators of the Maison.
Joined by the Spanish singer Rosalía, who serves as musical curator and performs during the show, the band of creatives activate a connectivity founded in the cornerstones of the Louis Vuitton Studio Prêt-à-Porter Homme: the belief that the pillars of Louis Vuitton – creatorship, craftsmanship and showmanship – have the power to move, connect and unite its audiences around the globe.
Unity is forged by familiarity. At the heart of the Fall-Winter 2023 Men’s Show is the most relatable story told: growing up. Historically entrenched in the artistic genetics of the Louis Vuitton Studio Prêt-à-Porter Homme, the rites of passage from childhood to adolescence and adulthood are circumstances that connect us all.
In the Cour Carrée du Louvre, Michel Gondry and Olivier Gondry construct a house of ages in which a boy’s first stages of life unfold. Room by room, the formative moments of our upbringing – from the monumental to the everyday – play out in familiar scenes scored by a live musical curation by Rosalía. They are imbued with memories from the Gondry brothers’ own childhoods: the bedroom they shared growing up, the excitement of decorating it, and the wallpaper they covered in doodles before it was replaced. Captured in a cinematic prelude that opens the show, their story culminates in adulthood shaped by the memories and experiences of the early stages of life, and the inner child that remains eternally present.
Connected by their shared experiences – from the commonplace to the life-changing – the Louis Vuitton Studio Prêt-à-Porter Homme detects in the formative premise of the collection the adolescent feeling of wanting, or sometimes having, to grow up fast. The experience – re-evoked whenever momentous events happen later in life – materialises in a mock-mature tailoring silhouette reminiscent of a young man’s idea of paternal masculinity.
Loosely founded in the Studio’s own mostly millennial memories of that look, it cuts a boxy yet fluid line likewise projected in work- and sportswear: a traditionally ‘manly’ shape imbued with the spirit of the inner child. The garments are adorned
in abstracted impressions of the checks that epitomise the adult sartorial look, some computerised as if seen through the 1990s lens of
the first digital-generation teenagers. The idea evolves in out-of-focus screen shots emblazoned all over garments, a figurative notion
echoed in generationally relatable written-word sentiments: ‘blurry vision of a bright future’ and ‘FANTASTIC FUTURE?_’
As members of the first generation raised on super-connectivity, the Louis Vuitton Studio Prêt-à-Porter Homme investigates and evaluates
the impact of the digital age. The thoughts are reflected in motifs, techniques and fabrications across tailoring, workwear and outerwear which reference TV, film, cyberspace, screens and cameras. It manifests in illusory designs such as a crypto pattern that resembles encrypted coding, in a hallucinatory TV embroidery made with pearls and sequins, or an apple TV motif with indistinct pixelated renderings of the fruit surrounded by white noise. Suits and denim are encoded with a highly textured fil-chenille that forms a blown-up image of an eye only visible through a camera lens. Blurry images interpreted in jacquard evoke the impression of movement too fast to be captured on camera. Graphics on leather recall the posters of Old Hollywood while landscapes from imaginary movie scenes are crafted in jacquards with subtitles in fil-coupé.
The collection’s focus on the computerised generation and human connection triggers an idea of the imprints we leave in life: the impact we have on the people around us and the evidence – whether digital, physical or emotional – that documents the existence of our character and influence. Next to the collection’s computerised motifs, the study manifests in suits, bags and handkerchiefs created with Colm Dillane, structured from fragments of leather printed with scans of real letters written by members of the Studio in the multitude of languages of
their nationalities. The notion of what remains is further interpreted in a knitted suit imagined with Colm Dillane, the yarns of which unravel stitch by stitch as it moves through Michel Gondry and Olivier Gondry’s building of life, leaving behind a trace of documentation. Nods to the age of connectivity are further explored in camera bags that film their surroundings as they are carried down the runway.
Faces of life
Pareidolia is the willingness to see illusory faces in faceless objects and elements. A vital human stimuli, the impulse is implanted within our brains as a means of constantly searching for connectivity. Whether we’re walking through a portrait gallery or scrolling through social media, few visuals have a greater effect on us than faces. Drawing on the collection’s themes of collectivity and connectivity, the Louis Vuitton Studio Prêt-à-Porter Homme applies this theory to garments and accessories, projecting magnified eyes – the ultimate connection-maker – across tailoring and workwear. Created with Colm Dillane, camouflage constructed from patchwork reveals the contours of faces in
a pareidolia applied to utility suits and jackets that also integrate the Maison’s logo. Artworks of unidentified faces painted by the designer are turned into prints and adapted with abstract layers of Monogram in a suit, a coat, and on shoes and bags. Boyish and surreal, they draw a line to the sensibility portrayed by Michel Gondry and Olivier Gondry in the cinematic prelude and the orchestration of the show.
CINEMATIC PRELUDE: “ GROWING UP ”
The Louis Vuitton Fall-Winter 2023 Men’s Show opens with the cinematic prelude Growing Up. Directed by French film-makers Michel Gondry and Olivier Gondry, who also created the scenography for the live show in Cour Carrée du Louvre, the short film depicts six defining stages of childhood, adolescence and young adulthood in stories and scenes that connect to the visual elements of the show itself. Reflecting
the concept of the live set – a building of ages where each room represents a phase in the life of a child – the prelude follows a boy’s coming-of-age from infancy to the age of twenty. It draws on themes inherent to the genetics of the Louis Vuitton men’s practice: formative development, the inner child, and the universal human experiences that connect us across geography and cultures.
Growing Up employs recognisable ‘Gondry-esque’ techniques and aesthetics – such as stop motion and ideas of morphing – characteristic of the directors’ practice. Through scenes that follow the protagonist from birth to early childhood to the ages of seven, fourteen, fifteen and twenty, the same items appear and reappear. They are key elements that come alive in the scenography of the physical show: a silver bag, a
stuffed toy, a toy car, a toy trunk. Equations scribbled on the wallpaper of the boy’s bedroom and his drumming session for a toy audience loosely nod at memories from the Gondry brothers’ own childhoods. As the story reaches the protagonist in his young adulthood, a clock on his bedside table turns to 2.30 PM – showtime – and the Louis Vuitton Fall-Winter 2023 Men’s Show begins.
The soundtrack for the Louis Vuitton Fall-Winter 2023 Men’s Collection features a live performance by the Spanish artist Rosalía, who also
serves as musical curator for the show.
Rosalía is a Grammy and eight-time Latin Grammy winner, who has shattered barriers for both female and Spanish-language artists with her
innovative musical fusions and distinctive style. Her breakthrough single Malamente (Cap.1: Augurio) from the album El Mal Querer released in 2018 married Spanish genres such as flamenco with R&B, hip-hop, contemporary Latin-American rhythms and electronic beats. Rosalía’s strong fusion of industrial visual arts, female empowerment, fashion and choreography has garnered her Coachella and Lollapalooza festival appearances and the most watched global YouTube video of 2019 for a female artist. In January 2021, Rosalía became the first-ever all-Spanish language music artist to grace the cover of American Vogue. In 2022, she released the album MOTOMAMI to international critical acclaim.
Colm Dillane is the multimedia artist, designer and entertainer behind the alter ego and brand KidSuper. Born in New York City, he started
his career printing t-shirts which he would sell in the cafeteria of his high school. In 2013, he set up the brand in a creative commune in Brooklyn where he and his friends would produce music and films. Founded in streetwear, Dillane’s practice is characterised by a colourful, connective and joyful spirit. He presented his Paris Fashion Week debut show in 2020 and won the LVMH Prize’s Karl Lagerfeld Award the year after. Since then, Dillane has been building an immersive retail gallery in Williamsburg, which will house performances spaces and recording studios in a reflection of the multi-disciplinary nature at the heart of his brand. Following his participation in the Louis Vuitton Fall-Winter 2023 Men’s Collection, Dillane will stage a KidSuper show at the January 2023 presentations in Paris.
Michel Gondry and Olivier Gondry
French directors Michel Gondry and Olivier Gondry are renowned for their visual innovations in cinema, documentary, music videos, and commercials. Through years of filmic partnership, the brothers have perfected their unique and instantly recognisable ‘Gondry-esque’ techniques, drawing on morphing, bullet-time, VFX, highly distinctive set designs, extreme sequence shots, and stop motion. In his practice, Michel Gondry aims is to bring image and music into perfect osmosis without ever distorting the artist’s work. He trained as a graphic designer and played drums in the band OUI-OUI before transitioning into film-making, helming music videos including Björk’s acclaime Human Behaviour and Bachelorette. Gondry’s feature films count the Academy Award-winning Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind as well as The Science of Sleep and Be Kind, Rewind, and the series Kidding.
An early career in computer programming saw Olivier Gondry move into special effects before becoming a director of commercials and music videos. He has collaborated with his brother on many projects, from programming fifty lights controlled by an Apple II for a party they gave in their house in Versailles in 1982 to doing a similar job – on a much different scale – for Daft Punk’s music videos fifteen years on, where he created a sampler that could reproduce the sound of a bongo drum for Michel’s recording. The brothers continue to work
Between them, the Gondrys have collaborated with leading artists of our time, including Daft Punk, The White Stripes, The Rolling Stones, Björk, The Chemical Brothers, Kylie Minogue, Paul McCartney, Lenny Kravitz, IAM, Stardust, and Foo Fighters.
Ibrahim Kamara is a creative director and editor, who has served as stylist for the Louis Vuitton men’s shows since 2020. Recognised for his radical and innovative work, his distinct and generational point of view marries a courageous approach to high fashion with a bold and graphic artistic direction. Born in Sierra Leone, Kamara spent his childhood in Gambia before he moved to London at age sixteen. With a degree from Central Saint Martins, Kamara was appointed Editor-in-Chief of Dazed Magazine in 2021. The year after, he stepped into the role of Art and Image Director of Off-White™. Featured in titles like British, French and Italian Vogue, he has worked with photographers such
as Paolo Roversi, David Sims and Glen Luchford, and collaborated with artists including Madonna, Beyoncé and Rihanna. Kamara’s work
has been featured in the exhibitions Utopian Voices Here & Now (Somerset House, 2016) Soft Criminal (Red Hook Labs, 2018), and Africa Fashion (Victoria & Albert Museum, 2022).
Lina Kutsovskaya is the founder and creative director of Be Good Studios, which she launched in Los Angeles in 2017. Her work includes advertising campaigns, exhibition curation, book and magazine art direction, brand identity, packaging design, website design, window display and installation. Over the last twenty years, her brave, emotion-driven practice has blurred the line between art and advertising and generated some of the world’s most memorable fashion campaigns, including the genre-defying work she has produced for Louis Vuitton since 2018. Ukrainian-born Kutsovskaya got her start in editorial at Vogue, Nylon and Teen Vogue. In 2008, she joined Barneys New York where she led the company’s creative direction. Since establishing Be Good Studios, her clients have included some of the biggest brands in the world.
COLLECTION DETAILS, MOTIFS AND TECHNIQUES
Apple television patterns depict the fruit in a blurry effect surrounded by white noise created through jacquard and tailoring and outerwear.
Bedroom motifs delicately embroidered in patchwork on denim trousers and a hoodie pay tribute to the sacred spaces of teenagers.
Blurry car motifs evoke high speed movement as captured on a TV screen and appear in the fabrics of outerwear and tailoring created through jacquard.
‘blurry vision of a bright future’ appears in writing on garments as a sentiment founded in the mentality of the first digital generation.
Coat-within-a-coats are single coats constructed with integrated overlays that create the effect of layering two coats.
Crypto patterns take their name from encryption and manifest in all-over motifs that evoke computer script in jacquard tailoring, technical sportswear fabrics, treated denim, and hand-cut fur.
Denim pieces are glazed, slashed, distressed or interwoven from scraps in plays on optical illusions and effects innate to TV screens.
Épi leather jackets and trousers with shoe-lacing details reinterpret the Maison’s signature material and nods at the movement-inspired patterns of the collection.
Eye motifs on suits and denim pieces are created through a highly textured fil-chenille that forms a blown-up image of an eye, which is only visible through a camera lens.
Face camouflage collaging reveals the contours of faces in utility suits and jackets that also integrate the Maison’s logo in an effect echoed through jacquard in denim workwear, through a multi-textured jacquard in outerwear, in patchworked poplin shirts, and in patchworked leather and suede jackets.
Face paintings scanned from paintings created for the collection and turned into a jacquard suit and a jacquard chenille coat nod at the notion of human connectivity.
‘Fantastic Imagination?_’ appears in writing on garments as a sentiment founded in the mentality of the first digital generation. Freezer motifs depict one garment or accessory within another and appear in a silver bomber jacket as well as in bags.
Fringing appears throughout the collection as a take on blurry and illusory effects, in knitwear, in the jacquard of suiting and workwear, as trims in tailoring, and as decoration created from the natural weaving of the cloth of check tailoring.
Knitwear interprets the illusory theme of the collection in plated 3D diamond patterns, constructions with fringes and frayed edges, and cashmere grid knits, while the collection’s face motif is evoked in a twinset with crochet-like embroidery and in a merino jacquard
hoodie and shorts.
Landscape imagery featured on coats depict imaginary film scenes created in jacquard with fil-coupé subtitles.
Letter suits are structured from fragments of leather printed with scans of real letters written by members of the Louis Vuitton Studio Prêt-à-Porter Homme in the multitude of languages of their nationalities.
Louis Vuitton Studios is a new logo based on those of classic film production companies, which features on the back of a jacket alongside an imagined 1940s cinematic image.
Metallics appear throughout the collection as a nod to the TV universe, from the luminous fabrication of blown-up bomber jackets to
the deformed hardware that adorns garments.
Motorcycling uniform effects are evoked through collaged appliqué in leather pieces.
Movement-effect tailoring pieces are created with compacted crinkled and pressed fabric needle-punched onto a wool base for a three-dimensional effect, and fashioned onto the silhouette itself in a warped shape.
Shapeshifting garments reconstruct panels from different garment genres into the same piece and appear across workwear, shirts
Shearling appears glazed and cracked in a flight jacket that echoes the same effect employed in bags.
Silver laminated metallic Monogram leather pieces nod at effects tied to the TV universe.
Tailoring is based on a young person’s vision of grown-up dressing and materialises in a silhouette that oscillates between the oversized and the fitted.
TV Hallucination patterns are created through multicolour jacquard motifs employed in tailoring embroidered with sequins
Unravelling suit components that come apart stitch by stitch with movement are made from cotton yarns hand-knitted seamlessly from the shoulder of the top and the waist of the trouser and down, allowing them to unravel as the wearer walks.
Workwear constructed in magnified volumes becomes increasingly oversized and culminates in trousers deconstructed into full skirts.
Bob hats appear in crocheted faux shearling hinting at shapes native to haute couture.
Bucket hats are constructed in placage Monogram with shoelaced edges, or in contrasting leather panels held together by jewelled
Caps are knitted in technical materials, or constructed in leather with baseball glove lacing and Monogram jewels.
Cone hats evoke the grammar of haute couture and futurism, and feature in plumed and French wool adaptations.
Dove and sky paintings turned into prints appear on beanie hats and scarves.
Dove figures are laser-cut and interlinked to form bandeau scarves and cowboy ties.
Face camouflage graphics appear across bandanas and stoles.
Face paintings turned into prints feature in bandanas and scarves, and in quilted and patchworked cushions and duvets.
Gloves appear in puffy leather manifestations with Monogram flower collaging, in musketeer silhouettes in leather with peplums, in cropped leather versions with Monogram charms, and as opera gloves.
Hoods evoking pilot hats are crafted in puffy leather with metal jewel tips, while others are constructed in three-dimensional technical polyester plissé.
Jewellery adapts the collection’s dove motif in metal and enamel pendants, and little metal spoon brooches and metal slingshots nod at the theme of growing up, while stacked strass necklaces, bracelets, rings and earrings draw on cinematic opulence. Deformed metal pendants echoed in the buttons of the collection capture the idea of a blurry vision and are featured across brooches, necklaces, bracelets and rings. Braided leather chokers with Monogram jewels and metal ear cuffs in Monogram caging conjure ideas of optical illusion.
Belts in leather feature Monogram flower buckles in varnished metal, snowboarding buckles, or deformed metal Monogram buckles, while chain belts are forged with magnified Monograms.
Letter motifs are interpreted in crushed top hats and handkerchief ties.
Shapkas appear in shearling with mohawk panels.
Sou’westers are crafted in puffer shapes.
Swim caps are created in latex.
The LV Discovery, a new shoe silhouette fusing elegance and functionality, features a squishy sole unit with uppers spanning from technical materials and leather including a glazed leather and monk strap version with a snowboard buckle, a lace-up derby in glazed leather, a technical zip-up version with a metallised liquid effect, a trekking interpretation with mesh and metallic decoration, and a leather boot
inspired by the colours of the face camouflage patchwork.
The LV Trainer 2 is the evolution of the classic athletic version made more minimalist with an upper in grainy leather, nubuck and patent leather with touches of anodising.
The LV Skate is adapted into a more minimalist manifestation in grainy leather with elegant laces in new delicate colourways. A special-edition LV Skate forms the Louis Vuitton logo through strands of interwoven leather.
The LV Baroque with its rubber moulded sole is introduced with a patchworked upper mixing Épi leather, nubuck and mesh.
The Louis loafer is adorned in a print of the collection’s face painting.
Camera bags in coated VVN canvas with VVN trims contain real cameras that film their surroundings as they are carried down the runway.
Car paint effects are created in a special-edition crocodile keepall.
Crushed silver bags forged ether in leather or patent leather with metallic foil that keeps the crinkled shape manifest across the Louis Vuitton icons.
Épi XL bags are created in softened, rounded and draped leather and take shape in reworked and magnified Louis Vuitton icons as well as an Alma clutch and travel bags in tan leather or VVN, and the new polochon, which is also adapted in crocodile.
Face camouflage collage bags are crafted in a patchwork of toile and leather in Monograms and the colours of the collection and span the Louis Vuitton icons including a new polochon, trunks, a Horizon trolley, knitted shopping bags, and a skateboard. A Cotteville briefcase with leather framing features the same motif within a holographic three-dimensional material.
Flashlight bags contain real flashlights whose spotlights project the LV logo.
Freezer bags – the trompe l’oeil of one bag within another bag – take their name from the idea of freezing a moving object in time and appear in square shapes with the image as well as three-dimensional detailing of existing Louis Vuitton bags evoked within them.
Inflated mini keepalls are rigid versions of the Louis Vuitton icon ballooned in shape and forged in metal, solidified leather or rigid
canvas in different finishes.
Knitting is featured in a sac plat hand-knitted in multicolour yarns that spell out ‘Louis Vuitton’.
Letter bags are structured with inserted fragments of leather printed with scans of letters from the Maison’s archive and real letters written by members of the Studio in the multitude of languages of their nationalities.
They take shape in a new messenger cartouchière, a stackable letter bag, notebook bags, and a keepall latticed in the style of the
lining of Louis Vuitton’s vintage trunks.
Nebula bags constructed in Monogram canvas that fades into metallic, liquidised clear material in gold and silver materialise in the
Louis Vuitton icons.
Packable icons are tote bags attached to mini Louis Vuitton icons into which they can be compressed. They include a keepall, a sac plat
and a soft trunk as well as canvas bags featuring the bedroom motif likewise employed in the readyto-wear.
Puffy bags are created in soft lamb’s leather with embossed Monogram.
Shearling puffer bags echo the jackets of the collection and feature with VVN details in the shape of the Louis Vuitton icons.
Stacked icons are messenger and tote bags bedecked with mini version of Louis Vuitton icons in a mix of leather and canvas Monogram, Épi,
Taurillon and Damier.
Twisted bags in mini-Épi leather skew the Louis Vuitton icons and include a two-tone Keepall 25 split in two and held together with magnets.
Upcycled looks in the collection are created through three approaches:
A. Pieces upcycled by recycling material from overstock.
B. Pieces upcycled from recycled ideas.
C. Pieces upcycled through reiteration from previous storylines.
The Upcycling Ideology has been created to de-program our minds from the images of obsolescence that lead to overload, overproduction and waste. With each season, Louis Vuitton flips the switch on the traditional approach to a collection, creating a culture of fashion where proposals are constructed from pieces that make looks rather than looks that have pieces in them.
Through the lens of the Upcycling Ideology, work can be recycled, upcycled, and even reissued in its original form. Ideas – the very foundation of fashion – are not disposable, but part of an eternal cycle of inspiration, codes and values that continue to elucidate
and expand the Maison’s ethos.
Previous seasons don’t exist as individual entities but unify into one canon devoted to the principle that no season is an old season. In a fast-paced and fleeting time, repetition equals documentation: gestures made and lessons learned. The collection exercises the three approaches of the Upcycling Ideology across fabrications, techniques and themes.