PARIS, France — For way too long, Acne Studios, at least on the catwalk, has been essentially a styling exercise. Pieces were layered, snapped, draped, morphed in seemingly experimental ways, somehow concealing the authenticity of the design.
The result was mock up avant-garde: a deceitful mise en scène. With this new collection, creative director Jonny Johansson won a double score: he got rid of both the avant-garde pretence and the overtly unnecessary styling, delivering a focused, winning line-up of floaty dresses, roomy jumpers and deconstructed tailoring accessoried with terrific bags and so-ugly-they-are-beautiful shoes.
Johansson worked around an organic, crafty aesthetic — very close to what Jonathan Anderson's is currently doing at Loewe — and it was all to Acne's advantage. For once, we saw pieces that could really translate from the catwalk to real life. This newfound tactile simplicity is a direction Johansson should further pursue.