Malcom Gladwell, author of the iconic 1997 article “The Coolhunt”, wrote that one rule of cool is you cannot name it. It’s elusive and it’s nonchalant. And for those who live inland, this is the allure of surfing. Dictated by the seasons and tides, the romanticized lifestyle seems both carefree and sensual.
Raised in a suburban Melbourne beach town, designer Lukas Vincent felt creatively stifled. The local culture seemed to focus exclusively on surfing, leaving no room for Vincent’s aesthetic inclinations. After living in the metropolitan cities of New York and Paris for seven years, he returned to the country and with his industry experience, birthed his own menswear brand, Ex Infinitas. Vincent merged surf motifs with modern punk, redefining the way surfing was seen through the lens of fashion.
In his Spring/Summer 2017 collection, Vincent continues the appeal of effortless cool with a lookbook focused more on developing a story rather than a simple showcase. Photographer Fabein Montique documented three young models lounging about in a deteriorating building, smoking cigarettes, swigging beer and playing video games in recovery (or perhaps in preparation) of a long night out. Their surroundings may be gritty. But their outfits are undoubtedly polished.
To the untrained eye, the collection titled “Sex Wax” might not seem surf-inspired at all considering the lack of the notorious knee-length board short. But closer inspection will reveal a wetsuit worn as shorts, chunky pool-slide sandals and a shearling bucket hat. Fabrics, like velour, are rich especially when paired with ‘70s jewel tones and striped robes. The functional tailoring of long coats, graphite jackets and tangerine-toned sweatshirts inject an elevated sartorialism as well. The models and clothes seem languid yet agile. At any moment, they might just grab their surf boards and sprint to the shore, changing in form as rapidly as waves or as Vincent has said, fashion itself.