On a Mission With Robert Geller S/S '12

Martin Marks
Robert Geller, who formerly worked with Alexandre Plokhov on the preeminent Cloak label, brought a sense of stark yet crisp moodiness to yesterday's menswear proceedings, with a collection that in some ways reminded me of Plokhov's now defunct line, but that was decidedly Geller's own.

The show at Pier 59 featured a stripped down runway, divided in the center by a whitewashed chain-link fence, which, through its austerity, accented the desert-like appeal of the clothes. Indeed, the models, their faces shaded by oversized missionary hats and their chests draped with heavy-beaded turquoise necklaces, almost appeared to be wandering through a brightly lit desert.

This season, Geller toyed with proportion and geometry. Shoulders were framed within triangles, and two-tone sweatshirts were layered over mesh tank tops and collared dress shirts framed many of the looks. If the proportionality had been off, the individual pieces might have seemed too heavy, or too droopy, but the collection as a whole had a harmonious sense of looseness and lightness -- a welcome balance, conveyed through Geller's use of linen and jersey and cotton, and his understated palette of grays and tans, punctuated with accents of yellows and blues.

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