Riccardo Tisci's Givenchy has always been influenced heavily by symbolism, love, religion, music, and animals. This collection boasted pieces of it all – both in literal and conceptual depictions – to foster what could be his most marketable season to date. And to think it may be his last at the legacy-laden house: he's been buzzed about leaving Givenchy for Dior since the Galliano controversy erupted before Paris Fashion Week.
For Fall 2011, Tisci took Givenchy to the streets of East Los Angeles, where Cholo (and Chola) street gangs hold fort. Influenced heavily by hip hop (Tisci was just recently commissioned to design Kanye West and Jay-Z's collaborative album cover, which looks strikingly similar to the collection at hand), this season was a beautifully executed, at times quirky, take on street aesthetics gone luxurious. See, for example, the gaudy symmetrical silk-print baseball jackets (to which he's been developing for seasons now – see his Pre-Fall collection) that looked straight from Gianni Versace's 1990s baroque print archive, to which The Notorious B.I.G. wore famously.
What normally would be considered 'bad taste' or lowbrow fashion, in Tisci's eye (and design), is a piece of art. Look closely and you'll find blossoming violets, gold chains, black panthers, and even Betty Page in his crowded prints. Sheer insets found in skirts and button downs helped create a fleshy reveal to some looks, enforcing the Betty Page reference. Sweatshirts, parkas and bomber jackets enlivened the street feel, only to be matched by the cuteness of kitten-eared riding caps, silken florals bejeweled in crystals, tutu skirts and ladylike silhouettes.
The palette was Tisci to a T: harshly black, but this time, paired with flashes of neons and golds to flood the eye. Patent leathers and cashmeres looked as modern as ever, with cuts that reveled in the overt 90s nostalgia happening currently. Overall, it's another success for the Tisci-helmed Givenchy, that you'll undoubtedly see everywhere – from hip hop videos to Bergdorf's and back.