ODE TO A VOLCANIC WOMAN
Fury, fervor, effervescence! For his first couture fashion show in Paris, Rani Zakhem celebrates life and joy in incandescent metaphors. Fire is the essential element of this sumptuous yet relaxed collection, dedicated to a volcanic woman.
Some creations seem to be sculpted in the light, like this pearl-beige silk dress, where red, orange and gold gems glow with a myriad of sequins that bring precious reflections back to the surface. Here the image of the volcano is spun to the neck, columned and entirely gilded, a recurring element of the collection and keystone of an architecture that favors ease, movement and, one would be tempted to add, the dancing flames that seem to devour the fabric barely touch the floor.
Clearly, the theme of fire, sometimes extinguished leaving precious streaks of diamonds on silky nights; sometimes fluid, sizzling cascades of molten metal on a short dress with dripping panel, and sometimes gently iridescent with warm colors, is only a pretext chosen by Rani Zakhem to salute the masters who nourished his vocation.
A scarfed collared, vertiginously split yellow chiffon, plissé soleil dress with mouton sleeves, is a joyful smile addressed to Jean-Louis Scherrer. Another, short black silk satin, real Moujik tunic adorned at the bottom with pleated yellow faille embellished with a large bow of the same fabric is a nod to Yves Saint Laurent. A third composed of a densely embroidered golden top with narrow three-quarter sleeves, and a long black pleated skirt is a reverence to Balmain. The heart skips a beat when the liquid gold drape of a silk jersey habillé evening sheath appears, ending with a large bow of black silk satin on the shoulder, a tribute of the designer to Madame Grès.
A black silk satin kaftan, embroidered on the edges with gold sequins and flame patterns at the bottom, recalls Rani Zakhem's native orient and plays the bond between his multiple cultures.