The roster for New York Fashion Week this year has a bit of a typical feel to it as it will be back in full force for spring 2023. However, Marni, which typically holds its shows in Milan, set out to change all of that with its New York City debut (the sun-soaked world tour kicked off in New York City), held inside an atmospheric tunnel beneath the Manhattan Bridge—complete with the roar of the subway system above and a densely packed front row that included Madonna, Kendall Jenner, and Doja Cat. The String Orchestra of Brooklyn then appeared, lining both sides of the runway and decked up in scarlet, delivering a dramatic Dev Hynes song.
Anyone who has ever been to New York would be familiar with the show’s Dumbo location and would be looking for a good Instagram opportunity, but on the Saturday night of that Marni show, it would seem refreshed, otherworldly, and like a true fashion happening—something Risso has recently shown himself to be quite good at.
The event began with a torrent of sunset-hued flippy dresses, skirts, jackets, and crop tops in jersey, bursting rays of tropical sunlight into the gritty, cobblestone-covered auditorium as the lights dimmed and a beam beamed through the tunnel. Next, huge shoulder bags with soft, fluffy textures appeared, followed by gigantic pastel slacks, tiny knit tops, and—true to Marni’s somewhat off-kilter form—knitted tops.
Despite the vibrant colorations and textures present, Risso presented a powerful range that felt more streamlined and simple than ones he had designed recently. There were suits, blazers, and square-shouldered jackets that were expertly fitted (Mitchell looked particularly snappy in his lilac-y velvet one). Fabulous flock velvet jeans with a super-flared cut. Regardless of the gender wearing them, filmy rib knits molded tight to the body, some with “sleeves” dangling from the waistline or additional neckholes, creating circular décolleté cutouts.
There were several items in the spring 2023 collection that seemed to fit the style of character analysis that is Risso’s forte. The ombré polka-dot leggings and matching floor-length jacket, as well as the oversized patchwork jackets made of fur and multicolored leather, gave the impression that they were taken straight out of a contemporary folk fairytale. Sarongs and bra tops with reflective mirror tiles reminded me of Mosaic street art from the 1990s. Some of the sweaters resembled something a grunge fairy queen could wear; they had a handmade appearance, as if they had been felted by hand, and had silver beaded chains swinging from the raw edges.