Document captures the designer’s best-dressed fans outside the label’s Spring/Summer 2023 presentation
Luckily for Rick Owens, the rain clouds in Paris cleared just in time for his Spring/Summer 2023 fashion show. Owens named the women’s ready-to-wear collection Edfu, after the Egyptian temple along the west bank of the Nile River, and Palais de Tokyo—the usual location for Rick Owens shows—served as an appropriate venue, with its towering Art Deco columns and staircase serving as the backdrop. Just as the show started, the fountain that stands in the center of the courtyard erupted, and the models walked out, using its edges as their runway.
In his show notes, Owens stated, “In my youth, Egypt had always been a setting of the morality stories I had learned in Catholic School… and in the silent movie books in my parents’ basement, featuring Cecil B. DeMille’s biblical epics and movies starring Theda Bara, a creature dressed as an exotic, ancient femme fatale who was originally born Theodosia Goodman in Cincinnati, Ohio.”
Owens translated images of Bara posing for French artist Gustave Moreau into immaculate gowns, with voluminous tented skirts made of recycled tulle called Econyl, which is made with plastic retrieved from the oceans and landfills—or as the show notes refer to them, “a 700-million-year-old jellyfish.” Owens used the jellyfish silhouette in bell-shaped jackets and translucent leather gowns. Dyneema, a patented fiber that is reportedly the strongest in the world, served as gridding on garments.
There’s something about Rick Owens that gives the brand a considerable cult following. Maybe it’s the moody, luxe, goth vibe, the secret material codes, or that black dominates most of his pieces. There’s even a sort-of-secret Rick Owens society on Discord called Rick Owens Discord, or ROD for short. Document set out to see what’s on the minds of the designer’s fans after the show ended. “I feel Rick is about couture, black, pops of color, form-fitting, shoulders, he’s always got some amazing shoulder work going on,” one said. “Body contouring work, he fits things to a silhouette. He’s always pushing the box when it comes to his work.”