Review by Sarah Mower:
“I’ve always loved autumn. This is a kind of Indian summer, with all the leaves. It’s a beautiful mood.” Karl Lagerfeld had conjured a forest into being at Chanel. It looked as if the fallen leaves of every park in Paris had been scooped up and brought in to carpet the Grand Palais against a photographic backdrop that stretched the forest to trompe l’oeil infinity. Where, we asked, was he thinking about? No forest in particular, he said, but then added, “I was brought up in the country, on an estate which had 12 allées [of trees] going from the house.”
The contemplation of nature as a fashion show experience has been on Lagerfeld’s mind for the last two shows in this place. He planted a formal French rose arbor in this venue for Couture, and grandiosely threw up the cliffs and roaring waterfalls of the Gorges du Verdon for his last ready-to-wear show. And, in between, there was his terrific Métiers d’Art show in Hamburg, the German seaport of his birth.
À la recherche du temps perdu? Well, it wasn’t that in any literal sense. Still, as the lines of girls began treading purposefully through the moss-strewn glade, the first long, slim black coats struck a quintessentially Lagerfeldian note: the attenuated Edwardiana silhouette that has reflexively dashed off his pen for decades.