Skylight Clarkson square hosted an incredible Brett Johnson Spring/Summer 2017 event last night, June 12, 2016. Just like with Sprezzatura collection of RTW F/W 2016, the designer chose to show his work not in the traditional runway presentation, but against a beautiful stage backdrop. This time, the models were positioned against the evening sky of a desert, and surrounded by cacti.
Being a film-producer, as well as a fashion designer, Brett Johnson has a unique perspective on presenting his collections in a staged atmospheric environment that directly connects each viewer with his design inspiration. It is a powerful tool that definitely accentuates his ideation. His creative design vision explores the unique chiaroscuro of light on ragged dark angles beneath the bright sunlight, and a smoldering sunset.
“The American at Taos Mountain” S/S 2017 collection is another nod of the designer towards Western aesthetic. He carries it through from his previous collection. Johnson draws his inspiration from the morning and night palettes of a dessert landscape: pale grays and tans, soft dusty-rose pinks, variations of blues of the ceaseless skies, black for the night mountains, and reddish orange for the flames of fire. However, similarities end there. The collection is luxurious in feel, and has very little to do with country living. Brett Johnson’s American in Taos perhaps visits, but doesn’t exist in a western reality.
The offering proposes soft tailoring and an updated perspective on the leisure set. Traditional Bomber and Eisenhower jackets are reimagined in a relaxed cardigan silhouette. The collection is rendered in textiles that are structured, yet relaxed. I particularly enjoyed soft knits and trousers with slightly nipped-in waists.
Well-known for fine fabrics and impeccable Italian construction, Johnson’s collection speaks the language of modern sophistication. Matte and textured fabrications, ranging from subtle to more demonstrative patterns, inject an element of movement into individual garments. We see cotton poplins and jacquards, Japanese denim, as well as denser fabrics, such as coated cotton and twill jerseys, and embossed and printed suedes. It is also important to say that the collection is not age specific. The cuts and styles work well for a man of any age, given his good taste and affinity to casual elegance.
“This season, I wanted the collection to adopt a more relaxed, understated perspective with looser, more casual silhouettes, without losing the refined sensibility synonymous with the Brett Johnson brand,” says Johnson.
The event was attended by nearly 600 guests, including the entire teams of GQ and WWD, as well as Robin Givhan of the Washington Post, Ken Downing of Nieman Marcus, Julie Gilhart, Steven Colb, Eric Jennings, Nick Sullivan, Bruce Pask, and Ray Smith just to name a few.