For NIHL’s Fall/Winter 2020 collection, a great deal of inspiration was derived from villains and characters within horror films who embody a certain queer persona. Creative director, Neil Grotzinger was thoroughly inspired by the characterizations of antagonists in film who have been coded with queer anecdotes and stereotypes as a way of making them seem “devious” or “strange.” Specific characters like Norman Bates in the movie Psycho or Buffalo Bill in Silence of the Lambs played a crucial role in developing this collection, as both are characters whose obsession with womanhood and femininity have been used to construct their identities as dangerous or psychotic.
Being that NIHL is always characterized by utilizing tools of subversion in order to adapt false perceptions, Neil wanted to take these contextual characters and transform their tropes into symbols of queer empowerment. By taking textiles associated with homeliness and motherhood such as florals reminiscent of table cloths, as well as mid-century feminine silhouettes such as the apron or full skirt, and chopping them apart to create new garments, the goal was to make clothes that were uncategorizable and completely unique from what they were before.
This collection is meant to celebrate the nonbinary uniqueness of our current time, and also reject the preconceived notions of queerness that have been perpetuated through cinema. It is both a rejection of stereotype and an embracing of unique characterization. http://nihl.squarespace.com/ https://www.instagram.com/nihl.nyc/?hl=en
Stylist: Erika Golcher
Casting: Joseph Charles Viola
Hair: Charlie Le Mindu
Makeup: Sam Visser
Florals: Sho Konishi
Jewelry: Austin James Smith
Photography: Alexander Thompson