By Day 2 of New York Fashion Week, the biggest runway show of the week was held, as Raf Simons debuted his first show as creative director of Calvin Klein. The event was highly anticipated — and subsequently praised — by the fashion community. Simons used the platform to make a subtle, albeit strong, political statement.
The song “This Is Not America” by David Bowie and Pat Metheny opened and closed the show.
Attendees and those watching via live stream quickly reacted to the music selection on social media, with many drawing the connection between the lyrics and many Americans’ feelings of discontent with President Trump and his administration.
“A little piece of you/The little peace in me/Will die/This is not a miracle/For this is not America/Blossom fails to bloom this season/Promise not to stare too long/This is not America.”
Not lost, either, was the fact that the show’s opening look was red, white, and blue.
— @Booth (@Booth) February 10, 2017
The shaaaade with "This Is Not America" closing @CalvinKlein tho!!!!
— Jian DeLeon (@jiandeleon) February 10, 2017
"This is Not America" played three times at Raf Simon's Calvin Klein debut. #notmypresident perhaps?
— Thessaly La Force (@Thessaly) February 10, 2017
For Simons, a Belgian native who most recently worked for the French house of Christian Dior, this is his first time working as a New York-based designer. Simons also brought his eponymous line to New York, showing his menswear line during Men’s Fashion Week, a week earlier than the Calvin Klein show, though Simons’s men’s show was largely an ode to the city of New York.
Before New York Fashion Week began, the New York City Ballet, wearing Opening Ceremony, held a performance that leaned heavily into the political, with the dancers wearing shirts emblazoned with the words “Protest” and “Fight.” And on Day 1 of NYFW, Vogue editor Anna Wintour was spotted wearing a Planned Parenthood pin during the Brock Collection runway show.
While New York Fashion Week ends on Feb. 16, the political messaging will likely continue throughout — and well beyond — the week.
Alexandra Mondalek is a writer for Yahoo Style and Beauty. Follow her on Twitter @amondalek.