Hedi Slimane’s tribute to e-boys will convince you to download TikTok—if you haven’t already
It is often said that high fashion trends eventually trickle down into popular, more accessible clothing, so when luxury fashion brands are glaringly inspired by the emblems of today’s online youth culture, it is indicative of a generation’s rising power. The Dancing Kid, Celine’s Spring/Summer 2021 Menswear show, offers up the question: What happens when Homme becomes E-boy? In other words, what happens when menswear is not defined by traditions of masculinity, but rather fluidity and heterogeneity? In an era in which TikTok determines what’s cool, what music goes viral, and what will be sold out tomorrow, it’s only fitting that an established fashion brand examine and incorporate the indomitable influence of Generation Z.
The Dancing Kid is about virality in a dual sense; the collection tunes into the influence and command of viral content on the Internet and is also situated in the context of a detrimental virus that exposed systemic failures and inequities, igniting a creative and vigilant generation.
Hedi Slimane, the creative director of Celine, invited the 22-year-old Canadian rapper Tiago Garcia-Arenas, aka Tiagz, to compose an exclusive 15-minute version of the anthem “They Call Me Tiago.” Slimane also photographed the young rapper during the filming of The Dancing Kid.
Bringing out a tone that is fun, whimsical, yet slightly rebellious, Slimane’s teenage heartthrobs are adorned with colored hair, flowy silhouettes, and bold, colorful prints reminiscent of the ’80s. The collection features kitschy classics and attire seen in teen-movies of generations past, such as animal print, running shorts, bucket hats, and letterman jackets. And many of the looks are completed by an e-boy signature: chains.
The Dancing Kid sincerely asserts that the celebrated figures of tomorrow are men and boys who paint their nails and can skateboard in a skirt. Gen Z is attempting to erode the confines of individual expression—an endeavour which Slimane’s collection effectively captures.