Few brands could consider themselves as truly “cult” but KTZ is certainly one. Marjan Pejoski’s clothes are grounded in ideology and difference. The backstory almost always details a personal journey of spirituality. Previous collections have been attributed to the designer’s pilgrimage to see the Inuit tribe in search for ancient wisdom. For the alternative youth craving for something to believe in, KTZ makes a compelling narrative that ultimately becomes its invaluable currency.
Today’s show was not short of subversion. It opened with an army of models straight out of Nick Knight’s 1982 Skinhead: mid-calf boots, military suiting and stitched-on insignias. A closer look revealed mosaic portraits of political leaders Mao Zedong and Karl Marx. It became clear that these youths were dressed for a revolution. Bowler hats and all white ensembles referenced Stanley Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange, one of the key works that inspired David Bowie and arguably laid the foundation for British subcultures.
But Pejoski’s collection wasn’t a simple linear call to arm for rebel youths. Looks 8 and 9 resembled a lot the taboo striped pyjamas from the Holocaust that have been remade and branded “Innocent” on the back. They quickly segued into abstracted mosaic tiles from the portraits earlier, perhaps an allusion to the pixels of facial recognition technologies, yet another heavily political zeitgeist.
It was one statement after another, but it soon became evident that the show moved from the more familiar to more hard-edged and reclusive. The last few looks were almost exclusively black, complete with leather neck braces and balaclavas. Leather was paired with more leather while KTZ’s signature white-on-black hieroglyphic motifs made a heavy appearance. It eventually went into the esoteric KTZ territory that perhaps could only be decrypted if you have been initiated. The collection revealed just enough for the outsiders to walk away with something to remember them by: with Marjan Pejoski at the helm, KTZ is just the cult that keeps growing.