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“Max tells me what to do, and I do it,” said Dao-Yi Chow of his Public School co-designer, Maxwell Osborne, following their women’s fall 2016 runway presentation on Sunday. “And he tells me what to do, and I do it,” added Osborne.
The native New Yorkers – born and bred in the city – channeled “old New York” this season: “The late ‘70s and early ‘80s was a time when it was this lawless town, like the Wild West,” said Chow, who referenced the 1979 cult film The Warriors. “We looked at our girl as this wanted woman. This outlaw that’s trying to battle through this lawless environment.”
The show was held inside the former Roxy NYC, a popular ‘70s roller disco turned ‘80s discotheque. It’s now a gallery space – Hauser & Wirth – showcasing the works of Belgian artist Berlinde de Bruyckere, whose “No Life Lost” sculptures (made of animal skins, metal, and wood) served as backdrops.
There was an abundance of oversize outerwear — hoodies, coats, anoraks — with a canvas of mostly black, army green, and bold pops of hot pink, all within the athletic streetwear aesthetic of Public School, which also showcased their newest collaboration. In the past, there were the much buzzed-about Jordan Brand sneakers, the Tumi accessories, and now, it’s a little more technical; their latest partnership is with tech brand Fitbit for the Alta fitness tracker, which the models sported in two redesigned versions.
WANTED FROM THE CATWALK: Models on Public School’s fall 2016 runway. (Photos: Getty Images)
“It’s cool just being able to share our point of view that might reach a lot of people – or a little people,” said Chow about what attracts them to working with other labels. “It’s mostly brands that we use in our everyday life, and we have a natural interaction with them.”
Front-row attendees included George Lewis Jr., known as Twin Shadow (who created the show’s powerful soundtrack), as well as heiress and entrepreneur Hannah Bronfman with boyfriend DJ Brendan Fallis – who all made their way into the crowded backstage to congratulate the designers.
It’s been a busy time for the design duo – who also serve as creative directors of DKNY – and the two said they were looking forward to their after party, which was being held at the Gramercy Park Hotel’s Rose Bar later that night.
“He has a wife thing,” said Osborne, when asked about whether they had any other plans that day. It was Valentine’s Day, after all.
“Yeah I do,” responded Chow. “You don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day,” he said turning to Osborne.
“I have dinner with all my single friends,” Osborne replied with a smile.
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