For, Spring 2016 the Academy Of Art University presented eight collections at New York Fashion Week on Sept. 11. There were four womenswear collections and two menswear collections. Ruone Yan is a menswear designer who was born and raised in Chongqing, China. Yan’s collection showed her inspiration with cocoon-like layers, fabricated from jersey, leather, and beige-toned canvas that she custom dyed with oolong tea. Livia Bianda is also a menswear designer. She was born and raised in Jakarta, Indonesia. Bianda’s lycra, mesh, pinstripe wool and pinstripe cotton graduation collection was inspired by the uniforms and exaggerated silhouettes seen on football players.
Mehrzad Hemati hails from Tehran, Iran. Before attending Academy of Art University, Hemati launched her own women’s ready-to-wear label, Mezza. She has interned at Yigal Azrouël in New York. Hemati’s Spring 2016 womenswear collection blurred gender lines, incorporating menswear elements into the cotton, silk charmeuse, duchess satin and organza garments.
Designer Wehan Yuan shared with atombash.com backstage, “My collection is an exploration of a girl’s lifestyle and it is a mix of menswear and women’s wear and the feeling is very sensual, but it has a strong personality. And I wanted to explore this kind of feeling through my collection. To me, it is about the menswear. I want the girl to wear men’s clothes. It’s so different and it is kind of sexy but not like the normal sexy feeling. Just mixed menswear was my inspiration.”
Jingci Jessie Wang shared, “My collection is about blurry dreams. We tried to create illustrious feeling so you can see the fabrics. You can see the lamé fabric, and we sprayed on the lamé to get it to seem different. It’s like the dream fades out and also the hard feeling with the leather, very strong, metallic leather, so it has a strong and soft feeling. We took the 1950’s and 1970’s silhouette and the couture and to combine our ideas so it is just like two people were dreaming something.”
Bom Kim and Liz Li shared, “Our inspiration is Chinese paintings and abstract art as well as modern art. We wanted to bring some modern feeling in and I wanted to bring her collection, her knitwear, I wanted to bring some more dramatic feeling … I wanted to combine this and make the traditional more modern.”
Mac Cosmetics did the make up for the show. The lead make up artists said, “So what we are doing this season for the Academy of Art is we wanted to do a look that was a bit more of a fray at the edges. It’s a young girl. She is tough, she has eyeliner on. I think what we are going for is a look that doesn’t look too overly manufactured by a makeup artist. So think of this girl who is almost like she has done her own eyeliner, she has gone dancing in it, she has slept in it, she might have slept with somebody in it, she has woken up the next morning, and the way that it has migrated with what is left is what makes it kind of cool and tough and really modern. So, things that seem broken down or seeming and feeling very fresh as opposed to something looking very strict, and tight, and very focused. I think beauty has been in this world of just everything has to be perfect that we are really telling this story of a New York girl who has her cheekbones. She is sort of androgynous or slightly tough and masculine. She whacks on an eyeliner, skips some spots for mascara, it gets on top of her lid, she doesn’t care about it and that’s what makes it really, really cool. It just becomes this makeup that is very edgy, raw, urban, and it makes it feel very fresh and modern, which has been a very nice departure. In the past we have done these cheekbones with perfectly sculpted eyes, we have done perfect lips with big smoky eyes, and this is just a season of where the girls could have done the makeup themselves.”
The lead hair stylist for the show said, “What we did was three looks. Two men’s looks and one women’s looks. The men, there is that euro, soccer, been exercising, out on the field, dirty texture. And then the second look is this super gelled, really stiff, gritty, messy, but set. Those are the two men’s looks. And then the women’s look is meant to kind of look like a mullet. So we took the hair, we put a lot of gel in, and we wrapped it around; we did a wig wrap but we left the bottom out so it looks like two different haircuts. So, the goal was to really look at the texture, really messed up and gritty and just not right but it looks cool and edgy and the nice thing about AAU and the team and Simon is they are super enrolled in pushing the envelope and looking at what is current and what is happening and their goal is the really say ‘this is what is happening in fashion.'”