The archetypal woman. The Mother. The Healer. The Shaman. The Priestess. The Warrior. The sheer strength and power of each of those roles is the inspiration for the Spring/Summer 2016 collection, Constellation, from Mexico’s Jesús Giles. And what a collection it is.
An archetypal collection (like the woman), Constellation is free of restraint, free of fuss, free of busy-ness, and free of imitation. Perfect patternwork, as complex as origami, producing perfect simplicity. Perfect construction, painstakingly producing perfect minimalism. Perfect color palette of white and gray, offering a blank canvas for a woman, the daughter of the desert, to rewrite her history. The past inspires the future without repetition… yet it is always with her.
From concept through finished product, Giles continues his own journey through design, nodding to the past, but looking towards the future. His Latin roots are evident in the stark luxury he produces - bold silhouettes refer to Mexico’s Baroque history while leaving the elaborate ornamentation behind. He conjures the Good Wife, La Virgen de Guadalupe, without sentimentality. He conjures the Bad Wife, La Llorona, without accusation. He conjures the Traitoress, La Malincheures, without pity. He conjures Quetzalcoatl, but in neutrals. He conjures the Toreador bloodlessly. He conjures the Senõrita without frills. He conjures the geometry of the Mayans and the Aztecs without replicating.
Crisp fabrics underscore the architectural qualities of Giles’ work. A wide, loose white linen shirt has a skinny collar and sleeves, with pockets riveted on. The modular crop-top in white linen is traced with white ribbon stitching. The paper-bag waist is reimagined, created by a fitted yoke with a valance of box pleats on a wide-legged gaucho-like bifurcated skirt in gray cotton. It is echoed in a barely-there pair of shorts recalling tap pants. The duster in white linen is fresh and functional - collarless, buttonless, relieved only by narrow gray banding on the full sleeves. The sleeveless dress is darted, releasing fullness at the bust and hips, held together at the sides only by a sash. Another dress is belted, with rib-baring arches cut into it. The narrow, high-waisted gray jumpsuit is drawn from the halter, but only superficially. Looping over the shoulders and lined with contrasting fabric, the jumpsuit is intrinsically related to a white, pencil-thin floor-length dress. The voluminous fullness of a gray, mid-calf skirt is contradicted by snug pleats sewn across the hips.
Giles is a maestro, a visionary, a romanticist. He sets his own pace and follows no one. Mexico’s reaction is unknown, but New York screams for him without knowing it. His regional influences have international appeal, and he is destined for greatness. Prepare yourself, Monsieur Giles.
Photo: Willy Sac + Model: Isela Lugo @PoseModelsMx + Hair & Make Up: Luis Vázquez visit www.jesusgilesbrand.com