In a smoky, green-lit room inside Milk Studios, ROCHAMBEAU’s dark pagan-like obscurity returned. Inspired by the “folklore surrounding water throughout history,” Sunday’s set resembled what the southern coast of Iceland might look like in night vision goggles. With their post-prophetic perception, designers Laurence Chandler and Joshua Cooper channeled Nordic beaches blackened by volcanic ash.
Water and its historic symbolism of “afterlife, departed spirits, and the mysteries of death” was nurtured by a murky color palette. Models in layered blazers, harem pants, and diagonal shorts swayed to a pulsing beat atop narrow tree stumps – melancholic remnants of last season’s levitating foundation.
Post by Amanda LaMela
The designers behind ROCHAMBEAU continue to uproot traditional notions of menswear, both figuratively and literally. Set with levitating trees over a ground of mulch, the Box at Lincoln Center exuded a dark, pagan-like obscurity. The shadows of this prophetic presentation established a suitable backdrop for the bad boys of last season to return.
Now older and wiser, the ROCHAMBEAU boys realize that a blissful homecoming is no longer within reach. Dressed in a casually deconstructed blazer, yet burdened with insight, this strong silent type wonders if he’ll ever recapture the happiness that once came with unawareness. Provoking invitees with leather finger-gloves and trimmed slouch hats, ROCHAMBEAU designers Laurence Chandler and Joshua Cooper delivered another high-impact collection for their ardently entrenched fans and followers.
Post by Amanda LaMela
Last season, ROCHAMBEAU introduced us to sun-kissed, Nordic men with good intentions. Carefully balancing structure with staunch, the ROCHAMBEAUs of AW11 impressed guests with well-edited depth.
And it seems that the label’s tune of “taking chances” continues, as ROCHAMBEAU moves away from the silent stability of last season and into something tougher, darker, more dangerous.
I suppose the mothers of Laurence Chandler and Joshua Cooper were too fond of the boys from last season. Maybe AW11 texted too much, asking where they were and what they were doing and who they were with and if it would be okay if they came along too. Perhaps it was the last straw when AW11 stopped by with chicken soup and wide eyes when the design duo lied and said they were too sick to go out.
Whatever the case may be, ROCHAMBEAU’s new boy has a motorcycle, a few tattoos he doesn’t remember getting, and a penchant for breaking laws. But this isn’t superficial suburban “anguish” – No, these SS12 boys lived on Avenue C in the 90s and learned a few things from their short stint in Ossining.
Chandler and Cooper have yet again pushed the envelope, instilling a memorable concept and hooking fans for another season.
Post by Amanda LaMela
Emerging menswear line ROCHAMBEAU has risen through the esteemed ranks rather quickly over the past few years since the fateful meeting of trio Michael Venker, Laurence Chandler, and Joshua Cooper back in 2007. With features in SURFACE, Nylon, and Gotham Magazines, among other accolades, under their belt, the label's mantra of "taking chances" certainly seems to have paid off. Having done our homework, it was with great enthusiasm that we returned to the Highline Room at The Standard for the ROCHAMBEAU A/W 2011 presentation.
The paradox surrounding the amount of effort required in order to appear effortless is a constant in the fashion industry, and a stumbling block for many designers - how do you craft a look that maintains the integrity of inspiration without coming across as affected? It's always a sign of true skill when you chance upon one of those collections where the inspiration is evident yet open to the kind of interpretation that gives pause - ROCHAMBEAU, for us, is one of these.
It's not easy juxtaposing deconstruction with structure. However, the blend of the two found throughout yesterday's presentation - most notably in a rich red jersey wrap top paired with a structured grey blazer and black sport pants, and a paneled twill overcoat in navy with a rigid black button up and drop-crotch jersey pants - we thought highly successful.
There was an air of mystery about the looks as well, in that all together they very much formed a collection but we knew very little about the man inhabiting them. Sunburnt, nomadic, and silent, there is still an ease about ROCHAMBEAU's boy conveyed by the line's well-edited deconstruction. The pieces themselves communicate volumes without divulging too many specifics - no easy feat, yet one that the designers achieved effortlessly.
Post by Nicolas Sera-Leyva