You could say designer Samuel Yang, a recent Central Saint Martins grad and former Alexander Wang intern, has a very cool new approach for his spring 2016 collection: He showed his designs in big chunks of ice at a Los Angeles presentation on Saturday. Don’t worry: The clothes survived the brisk ice bath, as they're primarily made of rubber.
Usually, there’s some sort of fetish theme when rubber, latex, and their ilk crop up on runways and on red carpets, but that doesn’t seem to be the case with Yang’s use of the shiny, slippery, waterproof material. Yang had worked with rubber in his Central Saint Martins M.A. collection, and he decided to use it in his spring 2016 designs to explore how it “express[es] tension on the body.” Another reason was because of the setting where he’ll be showing the stretchy, sweat-inducing pieces: “For me, this material is so connected to Los Angeles — it’s such a body-conscious city, and everyone has such perfect bodies or want to form themselves after certain looks. Rubber does that,” Yang told Dazed & Confused. Ah, deep musings on artificial Angelenos.
As for the significance of the ice blocks: It’s unclear, but we’ve reached out for further details. Yang has also worked with PVC-coated fabric and plastic, and he collaborated with designer Yifang Wan last year on a grown-up version of those beloved childhood sneakers with light-up soles. His ice-encased spring 2016 collection was more significantly not a traditional fashion presentation — Yang collaborated with choreographer Milka Djordjevich on the ice-filled project, which was called Untitled (Ephemeral Study 1).
It's interesting that Yang didn’t try to show on (or at least wasn’t timed to) the monthlong fashion schedule of spring 2016 shows that kick off with New York Fashion Week on Thursday. We wonder what elements the burgeoning designer will play around with next. A fireproof collection, perhaps?