The 75th annual Golden Globe Awards are here and topics like politics and social justice are already proving to be front and centre. Men and women have joined together by wearing black to protest gender inequality and acknowledge the flood of sexual abuse allegations that have plagued Hollywood over the past few months, and stylists are Instagramming the behind-the-scenes look at all-black clothing racks for their clients. And while the jury is still out on whether or not wearing all-black — the colour of protest — is an actual form of activism, it’s worth noting that when you’re restricted to only wearing just one colour, creativity forces your hand.
In 1994, before John Galliano joined Givenchy and was broke (so broke that he was sleeping on his friend’s apartment floor), he created a legendary all-black collection, fusing what Vogue calls “a career-making collection fusing East and West of Japanese kimonos and glamorous 1940s-style tailoring.” It was his eye and aesthetic that earned him the spotlight, cementing his point-of-view as a designer that only hinted at what was to come, and it forced his hand to be even more creative — to take something so familiar and make it his own.
The New York Times fashion critic Vanessa Friedman summed it up succinctly, writing: “Clothes speak as loudly as many words, and they can be weaponised accordingly. They have finally seized control (or at least semi-control) of their own image making.” And from what we’ve seen on the red carpet on Sunday evening is that Hollywood has risen to the challenge in more ways than one, taking on a one-colour evening by playing with textures, pops of colour, hemlines, and even illusions. There is a reason fashion is always the touting the magic of having a little black dress or the perfect black pump: It allows the person wearing the item to shine in a unique way and is adaptable across a variety of personal styles. And as E! News correspondent Kristin Cavallari said during the network’s broadcast of this evening's red carpet: “It’s really fun to see everyone’s take on black.”