My First Indian Summer: Lakmé Fashion Week

For a few seasons now I wanted to experience Lakme Fashion Week in Mumbai, India. I just browsed all the albums and designer profiles and here is the verdict. I pretty much don’t know sh*t about non-western fashion histories & practices. My imagination is usurped by the godawful tradition of colonial imagery that envisions India as a colorful playground for white Western eat-pray-love escapades (and prior murder-rape-pillage endeavors). One does not have to go far, at all. Literally this morning, I thumbed through the April issue of the Corriere della Sera STYLE magazine in my Bologna neighborhood café…  Anatomy of almost any India-themed editorial: a Ganesha/deity pic, a palace and-or temple backdrop, dis/comfort of Louis Vuitton & such style powers, no Indian people. Check your local fashion media. DSC_1766 Each year Bollywood outproduces Hollywood. Guess how many Indian films were nominated for the Best Foreign Language Oscar in Academy’s 87-year history? THREE. Jodie Foster has more nominations than Indian cinema. (Not intended as a Jodie Foster jab!) Let me put it another way: 30+ nominees represented France while Americans have a long lampooned mutual animosity with the French culture! Tell-tale Oscar trivia aside, I doubt I can write about this without sourcing my references in Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, The Darjeeling Limited, and Slumdog Millionaire. So I leave you in the marvelous company of several designers whose summer-resort 2015 collections made me catch my breath, check my pulse, click save-as and commit to expand the post-paris discourse beyond my own excruciatingly limited visual languages, cultural frameworks and psycho-emotional sentiments: mosaics by Aartivijay Gupta and bright birds of Ikai by Ragini Ahuja, patchwork and layering by Mayank Anand Shraddha Nigam and Vrisa by Rahul & Shikha, the painstaking exquisiteness of Suneet Varma and Arpita Mehta, and The Blue Runway collection by the maître Manish Malotra who turned his signature wedding couture into a political statement on gender equality.

Check out the #postparisfashion reviews of the glam-stunner Jatin Varma and the fun-tastic QuirkBox and the Indo-Russian magician Neha Agarwal and the complexities of Indian menswear.

Follow Lakme Fashion Week in Mumbai via Instagram & Facebook.

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