Prabal Gurung; What’s Going On?
The young Prabal Gurung’s S/S15 collection was largely an evolution of the one which came before it, with the designer again drawing on heritage and his home of Nepal. He cited the Himalayas as a great source of inspiration, explaining that this collection was something of a “visual diary” of a mountain trek.
Indeed, the mountainous references are felt in the beautiful colours and patterns, which Gurung himself designed to go on the dresses. Thick, solid pieces of fabric seem to dissect the bodies of the models, simultaneously breaking up the images and patterns into abstract fragments.
Every design has an air of contemporary confidence, with almost offhand silhouettes, occasionally given some structure with a belt around the waist, but largely left loose to drape and swirl about the body, like clouds about a mountain.
Watching the show in terms of colour palette felt, to me, much like watching the sun set; bright, daytime whites and blues transformed into warm pastels as the show progressed, and eventually onto darker, evening shades of purple, black and blue.
In some ways, the collection does seem like a mismatch of disparate elements, rather than a united whole, but the advantage of that is the incredible range of designs that it throws up. It also puts me very much on the fence in terms of my opinion; whilst I’m not a fan of the white and turquoise pieces, for example, some of the darker, belted dresses with their abstract patterns are much more my thing. Either way, I definitely think that Gurung should have stuck with some unifying elements to bring his outfits together, and so make this collection even stronger than it already is.