For Spring/Summer 2023, Raf Simons has left Paris and headed to London. After delaying his show out of respect for the Queen Elizabeth II’s passing, Simons’ latest mixed collection was finally presented, during London’s Frieze 2022 fair and alongside Alexander McQueen, his first real show in the British capital.
“As the country enters a period of official mourning, we will take a break during this time of great sadness. We will take this time to respect the legacy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and her 70 years on the throne”, the brand said at the time in a statement.
It was in the cavernous halls of Printworks in southeast London, a massive newsprint factory whose rooms have long been reappropriated as nightclubs and is about to be demolished, that Raf Simons chose to show his collection, followed by an after-party.
While the collection’s color palette remained fairly muted, so much so that Simons described Spring/Summer 2023 as “the barest, most minimal collection I’ve ever done”, in an interview with Evening Standard newspaper, the silhouettes, on the other hand, remained equally and surprisingly streamlined, compared to the mega-shoulders and big proportions of his previous collections. However, the influences were very diverse, ranging from rave touches to punk references, utilitarian workwear and couture touches. Prada’s co-creative director also incorporated graffiti prints, such as “Let’s drink the sea and dance” or “Station” by the late Belgian artist Philippe Vandenberg on t-shirts and dresses, further emphasizing the raw, punk aesthetic omnipresent throughout the collection.