Raf Simons’ Spring 2017 Ad Campaign
ONE DAY BEFORE SIMONS DEBUTS HIS FALL COLLECTION IN NEW YORK CITY, HE UNVEILS HIS SPRING 2017 CAMPAIGN
BY OBI ANYANWU
All eyes are set on Raf Simons. The attention is nothing new for the Belgian designer, who previously sat in the coveted seat as Creative Director of Dior, but his next chapter at Calvin Klein has a seemingly much larger audience than the previous one. On Wednesday, February 1, Simons will present the latest collection of his eponymous label in New York City, his new home base, but on Tuesday he unveiled his Spring 2017 campaign.
Willy Vanderperre shot the black-and-white campaign interspersed with portraits and half-body images. The brooding youths are photographed by a window and white brick wall, while the portraits, which capture the models’ moods and characters, are photographed with a plain background. While only three models wear caps in the portraits, all models don a belt around the neck in reference to photographer Robert Mapplethorpe’s photography of the BDSM subculture in the 1960s.
The collection, which first debuted at Pitti Uomo 90 in 2016, features images by photographer Mapplethorpe who is known for his black-and-white images and controversial work. The campaign channels the energy of Mapplethorpe’s notable work and even nods to the 1980s film Cruising, starring Al Pacino.
Always one to highlight the youth and subcultures, the Spring 2017 campaign is evocative in its minimal presentation.Though Simons embarks on a new chapter with Calvin Klein, he doesn’t stray too far from his beginnings as a fashion designer highlighting the rebellious young and youth cultures. As some things change, some things stay the same and the Spring 2017 campaign is proof that this is not a bad thing.
Photographer | Willy Vanderperre
Stylist | Olivier Risso