Craig Green: Menswear SS20
Craig Green’s first exits and new proposal for SS20 spoke to SS19’s commercially successful shadow-print cotton pieces, as the designer laid together, what appeared to be, patches of suede and black leather to form boxy jackets and kicky trousers. This seamless patchwork continued with leather fabric sections, cleverly placed, to recreate the look of a decorator’s bib and brace. But then Green’s work always starts with workwear. He finds fascinating complexities in the simplicity of something like a carpenter’s jacket.
Perhaps in reference to the “new silk route”, the rail line behemoth, which, when fully complete, will dissect south East Asia and end in Europe, Green riffed on the workwear of China. His traditional-looking padded jackets with naive decorations (abstracted flowers using an expressive whip-stitch) were new and exciting. Some jackets came with patch-pockets shaped for mittens and gloves hung and flapped around on strings from others. The whole show spoke of naive and traditional decoration and, in parts, of childrenswear. Traditional wood-cut prints of coats of arms and fruitful scenes (reminiscent of the traditional Mexican technique of “papel picado”)
, came as cut-outs in fluoro plastic coats and jackets and tunics you can wear. And gingham separates seemed to be printed with instructions similar to those on packaging wrapping a new washing machine: were those arrows pointing ‘This Way Up’? The last section of looks was exceptional. Jackets and coats printed with pictures of a man’s torso and on others, a full body – could these prints be a commentary on the “selfie generation”? These are, after all, the shoppers fuelling his business and wearing his looks.
The exquisite prints – like works of art – spoke to the practice of the photographer Katerina Jebb and the tryptiques of Gilbert and George: artists, fashion icons, and, of course, selfie progenitors.
Photographs by Jason Lloyd-Evans