Lurking right inside its front door banks, Barneys most discreetly placed window displays feature Helmut Lang and A.L.C., frozen in the crossfire of a mannequin murder scene. It's quite the assault --the writhing, albeit impeccably outfitted, female figures look tossed about in a dynamic melee behind blood-and-bullethole-splattered windows. Per usual, the store surely anticipated a polarized reaction from shoppers, and while the scenes lay fairly hidden from public view (to most locals it's probably a less scary scene than Times Square in the afternoon, but tourists trolling Madison Avenue may not agree), we're torn between outrage and intrigue on this one.
On the one hand, it's a stunning composition of beautiful clothing, movement and dark drama, but on the other it's violent and has the bad kind of surprise that can only be compared to a Jack-in-the-Box. It's funny, actually, the parallels between fashion and morbidity: killer outfits, a look to die for, murderously high heels, Tyra's fierce catchphrase ... what gives? Since when did dressing become so treacherous? Maybe if you look at this as more of a Murder on the Dance Floor look, as opposed to, say, just murder, we may be able to get behind it.