It took guests lining Balenciaga’s mud-filled Paris showspace mere seconds to recognize that walk. Stomping down the brand’s sludge-splattered runway in Parc des Expositions was Ye, who opened a show dedicated to individualism wearing leathers and a game face to rival any model.
With his cap pulled low and his hood up, the enigmatic rapper and Demna collaborator – who you may know as Kanye West, but now goes by just Ye – was in his typical paparazzi-dodging mode. Layered up in all-black motocross-meets-military separates, he represented the brand’s new mission to step away from the labels the industry so very much likes to use.
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“I’ve decided to no longer explain my collections and verbalise my designs, but to express a state of mind,” said Demna in his press notes. “Fashion is a visual art and all we need is for it to be seen through someone’s eyes.” Much like any creative outlet, he argued, fashion should not need an explainer to sell it: “You either like it or not.”
What of that dirt soiling Ye’s normcore boots? (Thank god he wasn’t wearing the crystal flip-flops!) The set was a metaphor for digging for truth and being down to earth. “Let us let everyone be anyone and make love not war,” said Demna. Fitting, then, for West, who just extended an olive brand to the Kardashian-Jenners by changing his Instagram profile picture to the face of family matriarch and momager, Kris.