CELINE has dropped a new fashion film for its SS21 menswear collection called “The Dancing Kid.”
Historically, veteran designer Hedi Slimane has mined youth culture and music scenes for inspiration, so the new TikTok-esque video and cast of e-Boy models will come as no surprise – “The Dancing Kid” is actually a pretty on point description of TikTok's whole M.O.
To put it simply: everything is on the table including the uniform of mid-’00s pop punk bands, fair isle knit beanies, trucker caps, kilts, camo ponchos, color-blocked windbreakers, hoodies, sneakers, sleeveless denim gilets, and of course, some fundamentally excellent tailoring.
The concept for SS21 began in December last year after Slimane photographed electric-haired TikTok star Noen Eubanks for a portrait series.
The films above reveals an eclectic procession of styles designed for a generation that “took advantage of the confinement to assert itself and emancipate itself creatively, spontaneously inventing an initiatory language anchored in dance and teen romance,” as per the press release.
In the past, Slimane has endured a weighty amount of criticism during his time at Dior Homme, Saint Laurent, and CELINE for producing repetitive collections with glittery jackets and waifish silhouettes.
There was even an infamous spat between Slimane and New York Times fashion writer Cathy Horyn who once described his RTW collections as a “nice but frozen vision of a bohemian chick at the Chateau Marmont.” She was subsequently banned from attending his shows.
However, that's all in the old world of air-kissing and insipid gossiping at Paris Fashion Week parties. It appears that the industry-wide pivot to digital or (if there's a gun to your head) phygital fashion shows has been good for Slimane, who has evolved his aesthetic moderately, and tailored his market.
Naturally, there are certainly familiar tropes from Slimane's tenure at Saint Laurent here, as evidenced by the bright colors and subtle palm trees motifs, but Slimane has brought in new blood via collaborations with artists Tyson Reeder, Jesse Harris, and Gregory Edwards for a new swathe of CELINE indie kids with trust funds in St. Tropez who don't leave their bedrooms.
“NAIL ME TO THIS WAVE” reads a mesh trucker cap from the collection, embodying the momentum CELINE is generating for the new season.
The collection was soundtracked by a custom extended edit of TIAGZ' “They Call Me Tiago,” drifting the brand further away from former creative director Phoebe Philo, and towards commercially-minded pieces that will appeal to a broader, and younger clientele – who will no doubt recognize TIAGZ from his “My Heart Went Oop” TikTok virality.
It's worth remembering that Slimane can always make pieces that sell, which – in the current economic climate – can't be overlooked as a part of his creative merit, and enduring mercantile instincts in an industry that's always demanding new stuff to buy.