"Crush," said Rei Kawakubo of her Spring 2013 collection for Comme des Garcons. "Energy explosion."
The show — and the clothes themselves — seemed like a reaction to Kawakubo's last collection, which flattened its pieces to two dimensions. This season compressed different bits of clothing together to create a multilayered effect. The first looks that came down the runway were made of white muslin, at times resembling different design-room patterns for jackets stacked one on top of the other. The models — all of whom wore sculptural headpieces that appeared to be made from found objects and crushed bits of metal — in this first section of the show came down the runway at a snail's pace.
Kawakubo's energy shifted (or exploded, to use her terminology) when models wearing black dresses came down the runway at a quick trot. These pieces subscribed to the same everything-but-the-kitchen-sink mentality as the preceding garb, but here there were shots of red or purple velvet throughout the looks. The show ended in white-clad models walking slowly once more, but these looks had a more striking energy: the bodice of one dress seemed to be a historical survey of women's sleeves.