ACOLYTE - ALEXANDRE PLOKHOV SPRING/SUMMER 2013
“The initial inspiration for this collection came from a book by Xavier Zimbardo called The Monks of Dust. It contains daguerreotypes of Russian Orthodox monks who lived for centuries on Mount Athos in Greece. Having always been attracted to the ideas of devotion and discipline, I was intrigued to learn more about these men. One item that struck me was the existence of the two distinct groups of clergy in this Church: The Parochial, who wear exclusively white and can marry; and the Monastic, who wear exclusively black and dedicate themselves to a higher calling. This tradition continues to the present.
Having always loved monochromatic dressing, I then began to explore this inspiration more literally, envisioning a journey from darkness into light. The color palette in the Collection that emerged is divided into a triptych: coal, ash, and alabaster.
The concise choice of fabrics further reflects an economy of purpose, including pure linen, homespun cotton, and vegetable-dyed leather. I chose to use only one treatment for cloth, a process called cold dyeing. This is not dissimilar to a technique these monks would have used in their everyday life. Similarly, I chose to include footwear with a primitive feel made entirely out of Crosta - a split of leather before it’s shaved and smoothed, leaving its surface rough and unever.
The looks are accessorized with cast bronze jewelry finished in matte colors corresponding to the garments.”