Marc Jacobs Pays Homage to the Hip-Hop Movement with Fall 2017 Show

Marc Jacobs Pays Homage to the Hip-Hop Movement with Fall 2017 Show

For his latest collection, the designer turns to the "foundation of youth culture streetwear" for inspiration: hip-hop.

For his latest collection, the designer turns to the "foundation of youth culture streetwear" for inspiration: hip-hop.

Text: William Defebaugh

It's good to know that some things are still sacred in 2017—chief among them, Marc Jacobs's ability to make a statement at New York Fashion Week. The designer took a minimal approach to presenting his Fall 2017 collection at the Park Avenue Armory today, where guests were seated in one long front row amidst a setting with no decorations, photography, or music. (Could any visual be more 2017?)

It was a stark contrast to Jacobs's Spring 2017 presentation, which felt more like a rave than a runway show. Then again, a lot has changed since September—namely, the political regime. When Jacobs showed his last collection, we had reason to celebrate; fashion was hopeful for Hillary Clinton to take the Oval Office. And, as one of the pillars of American fashion, isn't it Jacobs's duty to reflect what's happening in this country?

This was represented in the collection itself as well, which was undeniably influenced by the late '60s and '70s—an era defined by protest, rise of feminism, the Civil Rights movement, and the Vietnam War. Girls wore exaggerated furs, plaid coats and skirts, oversized chains, calf-length leather boots and platforms. The tall fur hats will undoubtedly be a statement staple of the coming season.

An accompanying show note titled "Respect" found Jacobs explaining that the collection was inspired by hip-hop, specifically the 2016 documentary Hip-Hop Evolution. It's certainly on trend, considering Baz Luhrmann's The Get Down was one of Netflix's breakout shows last year, set for a big return in 2017. (Respect was certainly a theme, with audiences forbidden from using their cell phones during the show.)

The hip-hop influence is a bold move considering how the designer came under fire for cultural appropriation last season with the use of colorful dreadlocks—a criticism Jacobs responded to by saying, "I respect and am inspired by people and how they look. I don’t see colour or race - I see people."

When the models exited the Armory, they lined up outside against a wall of speakers that began blasting "Walk On By," Dionne Warwick's 1964 track that was later covered in 1969 by Isaac Hayes, and then sampled by Beyoncé on 2016's Lemonade. The use of the song drilled home the point of the show.

Watch the collection live on MarcJacobs.com.

UP NEXT

Meet Tessa Bruinsma, the Model Fronting Two Coveted Campaigns