By Ludwig Spies
Fashion and music have been lovers for a very long time, continuously and heavily influencing one another. Both are intensely sensorial forms of expression and together they give rise to cultural movements that embody the mood, attitudes, ideals, context and the anxieties of a generation. This year SAFW AW16 saw Warner Music SA partner with designers Amos Tranque and Ephraim Molingoana to produce a climactic end show for the week.
The atmosphere in the show tent was positively electric, and the guests could not help but smile when the iconic high-pitched notes of Madonna’s Vogue rang out from the speakers. The show opened with the scientific severity of Tranque and ended with Ephymol’s richesse. The mere fact that a menswear show could be produced to showcase this juxtaposition is a testament to the development of the South African fashion industry. Read the details below.
AMOS TRANQUE by Amos Tranque
In The South African Fashion Handbook Tranque explains that he draws inspiration from disciplines like psychology, science and philosophy. This intellectual orientation was evident in his collection, yet the final product was highly wearable. This must be due to a keen ability to deconstruct his sources of inspiration and apply their fundamentals in a functional way to the business of creating clothes. Hence, one cannot help but draw the parallel between Tranque and cubist painter and fellow Spaniard, Picasso. Tranque’s collection featured robust, geometric designs in a black, white and grey palette, and smooth, acrylic and vinyl textures perfected the hypermodern style of the garments. There is no doubt the South African market has gained greatly from the addition to the industry of Tranque’s fashion architecture.
EPHYMOL by Ephraim Molingoana
Molingoana revisited the suave 70s with a collection of boldly patterned form-fitting suits, tailored trousers and tight long-sleeved tops with minimal collars. The cuts and the palette of muted coppers, bronzes, steel, army greens and artichoke were reminiscent of 70s playboys and older military uniforms. The garments had the fantastic effect of accentuating the contours of the male body – highlighting the shoulders, the S-curve of the spine and the perk of the derrière. Glamorous alpha masculinity with a dose of good-humoured arrogance.