(New York) Under the heat and with one eye on the strike in Hollywood, New York kicks off its Spring/Summer 2024 Fashion Week on Friday with the returns on its catwalks of the brand Helmut Lang and the heavyweight Ralph Lauren.

The festivities have already started, outside the official calendar, with a sensual fashion show filled with transparent materials at Coach on Thursday evening, briefly disrupted by the animal rights organization Peta.

In the setting of Manhattan’s Central Library and under the eyes of the high fashion popess Anna Wintour, seated next to Jennifer Lopez, an activist infiltrated among the models, her body naked and covered in paint with the “Coach: leather kills” inscription, followed by another holding a sign with the same inscription.

On Wednesday evening, fashionistas and celebrities (Naomi Campbell, Doja Cat, Naomi Osaka, Gigi Hadid) had already been able to meet in the great auditorium of the Manhattan Center for the Victoria’s Secret evening, around the film that the lingerie brand will release at the end of September on Amazon Prime.

The film, entitled Victoria’s Secret The Tour 23, and which highlights the work of designers and artists from Lagos, London, Bogota and Tokyo, must replace the brand’s famous parades, accused of conveying the caricatured image of a femme object, and abandoned in 2019.

The official calendar offers a shower of young talents and emerging brands, among established names and a handful of heavyweights (Ralph Lauren, Michael Kors, 3.1 Phillip Lim, Altuzarra, Gabriela Hearst, Carolina Herrera, Tory Burch, Luar), the recipe that allows New York to get the ball rolling for fashion weeks, before London and the most popular, Milan and Paris.

For Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) Executive Director Steven Kolb, the program highlights “the strength of this city, in terms of creative thinking” and shows that New York remains “a cornerstone” of fashion.

Under the humid heat of the New York summer, a six-day marathon kicks off Friday afternoon in Manhattan’s Lower East Side with Helmut Lang, who marked the 1990s and 2000s with to the minimalist aesthetic of the Austrian artist.

Helmut Lang the designer left fashion in 2005, but Helmut Lang the brand continued to exist, bought by Prada, then by the Japanese group Fast Retailing, also owner of Uniqlo.

She returns to the catwalks of the Big Apple with a collection concocted by her new artistic director, Peter Do, considered one of the best talents in New York fashion.

The parade is announced with nostalgia, through the image of a yellow taxi, a nod to the founder, the first fashion designer to put his name in advertising on the neon lights of these vehicles at the end of the 1990s.

Another brand to make its return on Friday, but in Brooklyn, where many of the fashion shows have migrated, the giant Ralph Lauren, symbol of the “preppy” style (preppy) and incarnation par excellence of American fashion in the world, with its figure of annual business of more than $6 billion. The Bronx-born designer’s brand has not shown in New York since 2019.

The season was marked by the double strike of screenwriters and actors in Hollywood for better pay, reducing red carpets for previews to a bare minimum, so many lost opportunities for brands to dress stars and let it know.

“Red carpets are certainly a way to address the public”, relativizes Steven Kolb, but the parades and the content broadcast by the brands on social networks will “contribute to a really sound and visible Fashion Week”, assures you. -he.