For his sophomore Ready To Wear show at FENDI, Kim Jones explores the joyful irreverence that has historically defined the house, alongside the empowered ease of his vision for its future. A modern perspective on disco-age glamour, and a spotlight on the diverse and powerful femininity that underscores the FENDI name.
Excavated from the archives, a logo hand-sketched by visionary fashion illustrator Antonio Lopez offered the starting point for a collection that draws upon the artist’s liberated sensibility and Studio 54 surroundings. “While I’ve been looking at Karl’s legacy at the house, I’ve also been looking around him, at his contemporaries – at who he was interested in,” explained Jones. “Lopez was a friend of Karl’s, and has always been someone who inspired me. He was forward thinking; inclusive; looked up to by everyone from Andy Warhol to Steven Meisel and David Hockney. I wanted to introduce him to a new generation.”
In collaboration with the The Estate and Archive of Antonio Lopez and Juan Ramos, now the artist’s work has been freshly revived. His gestural brushstrokes appear in elegant abstraction across cream kaftans and silken shirting; his figurative drawings translated into intarsia leathers, intricately engineered lace and shimmering jacquards. FENDI’s iconic bags become canvases both for his work and the renowned savoir-faire of the house’s ateliers: a Baguette tapestry-woven into a rainbow; a Peekaboo transformed into a graphic artwork. Lilies adapted from Lopez’s illustrative motifs become enamel hair accessories; Plexiglass hoops and degrade metals offer a tropical touch imbued with decadence. Encased in resin, the FENDI First heel is given a seventies spin; in shimmering leathers and saturated stripes, the FENDI First bag embodies a bold attitude. “This is my first live show for FENDI, and it’s a celebration,” reflects Jones. “Our woman has let loose a bit – she’s going out, dressing up. We’ve all been locked away for so long that I think that’s what we all need right now.”
The spirit of the women who Lopez often discovered on dancefloors and always exalted in his work – Jerry Hall, Tina Chow, Pat Cleveland, Bianca Jagger, Grace Jones – introduce a high-octane energy, and a new dimension, into Jones’ continued celebration of female confidence. “My FENDI is multi-generational. It’s for all different kinds of women – anyone who wants to feel good about themselves,” the designer reflects. “The Lopez woman, and the FENDI woman, is empowered; she’s someone of her own making.”