If there is a ranking solely dedicated to brand names, Surreal but Nice would be on top of the list as the most confusing, illogical yet still kind-of-cool brand. “What do mean ‘but nice?’ Since when was surrealism not nice?” a slew of artists who were nothing but revolutionary including Salvador Dali, Marcel Duchamp and Joan Miro would demand an answer. But sarcasm aside, the duo are known to put up a good show with pieces that are usually more appropriate for editorial shoots than as everyday wear. They are not couture but utility seems not to be at the core of their design philosophy- not that it matters anymore especially with all the attention given to street style. The point seems to be that we should wear what we want, simply because we are free to do so.
Continued from their last collection, fringes appeared again but in a shorter version, and while tuxedo-inspired blazers and vests were eye-catching, it wasn’t until what looked like some mystical maze pattern paired with vertical stripes started appearing that things got really interesting. They can make anything with the maze pattern and it would sell. Tattoos can sometimes add fun to a show, but only when done in moderation. In this case, it looked overdone especially with the cartoonisty print which added nothing but distraction. The oversized blazer and a dress/skirt over pants would have been better if any of the three pieces was fitted or at least a size smaller. The bagginess of everything made the models look like they were wearing things randomly picked from a thrift store, and we are referring to at least one globally recognized top model here (aka Kwak Ji-young). The show seemed to be shifting gears towards the end with video game or just some random doodles that looked like they were borrowed from kids’ clothing. Please correct me if I’m wrong but the red and black lettering looked like a “Youtube” logo.
It’s good to be different and unique, but one should always know where to draw the line. But then again, how will we ever achieve things at an extraordinary level if we never took a risk? These are just samples after all, which means the freedom offers designers an opportunity to experiment and explore. On that note, definitely a great show with lots to see; I hope the buyers noticed their potential and bought lots of the “maze” things because man, it’s the coolest.
Photo by Justin Shin, fashion photographer Seoul Korea