Jean Paul Gaultier came out swinging Thursday with a boxing-inspired fall-winter 2010-2011 menswear collection that swapped the runway for a ring and saw bloody-faced models trade punches in front of the cameras.
The fashion heavyweight infused the wardrobe of silk robe trenches, leather muscle tank tops and slinky boxing leggings with a fighting spirit. Turtlenecks emblazoned with anatomical muscle prints were paired with low-crotched leggings and a snappy suit made out sweat-pant fabric looked like what Rocky would wear to a black tie event.
Mr. Gaultier continued to borrow from ladies' closets, sending out feminine pieces like skirts and sheer sparkly shirts.
Known for squeezing the last drop out of a theme, Mr. Gaultier beat this one to a bloody pulp: Fight-ready boxing gloves in red leather became a must-have accessory, as did face-saving masks, lace-up leather shoes, towels - worn like scarves over 1930s-era suits - and extra-wide belts embossed with Mr. Gaultier's logo that were worthy of a champion.
“It's about combat, combating boredom, combatting the reigning depressive state,” said Mr. Gaultier, who sported a nasty-looking shiner, a split lip and rivulets of fake blood tricking from his temple.
Asked whether he practiced the sport himself, Mr. Gaultier said, “no way.” He added that when a photographer asked him to take a swipe at a hanging punching bag, he gave it a bear hug instead.
“I don't think these little hands are made for such a sport,” he said.