29 Jul 2022 By May Ng

SPORTMAX RESORT 2023: Victorian Psychedelia

A cross-pollination of the sort of poetic austerity derived from Victorian-era dress and sensory alterations born from psychedelic culture, defines the creative rebellion conjured by Sportmax muse PJ Harvey. At the core of the brand’s Resort 2023 collection, a narrative is written in flashes of contrasts, while designs are enlivened by a hyper-contemporary, emboldened ethos throughout. Fashion thrives via encounters and clashes from which change is unleashed: a reaction in which opposite souls explode in a visionary short-circuit imbued with the novelty of the here and now.

The nineteenth-century rigor of Queen Victoria’s England is spoken through language written in notes of monochrome and a prevalent number of black encounters that intermingle with various hues of white. Sober, high collars are softened by small ruffles, while conquering puffed sleeves are enhanced by bracelets that sit above the elbow and skirts that flare out into fanciful orbs.

The psychedelia of the 60s and 70s comes to the fore in a kaleidoscope of energetic colors, lysergic patterns and curved lines that trace the body’s curves and transform the written word into a distorted array of graphics. From those alterations of the mind, consciousness expands into an amplified perception of itself. Translated into a version of fashion that is heightened with pop graphics, jacquard knitwear in oversized volumes embraces the figure and then surprises with flares or slits.

An aesthetic cacophony is magnified by the presence of PJ Harvey, an absolute expérimentateur capable of navigating the oceans of different cultural solicitations.

The English singer and musician is traversed by her own irrepressible desire for freedom, strength, and dissent. Disseminating a mood where provocation is never the defining element but serves rather as an instrument of knowledge and self-affirmation. With this protagonist in mind, trouser-suits emboldened by exaggerated shoulders are worn bare, perhaps squeezed at the waist by a silhouette-enhancing belt.

For Sportmax, contrast is the lifeblood, the creative tension that empowers the complex totality of the feminine spirit and that can only be achieved by ushering in discordance. For the latter is the fuse from which a new style explodes.

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