From the look of the craftsy, unfinished-wood runway set, and meandering rows of brightly colored metal stools, it looked as if we were about to sit down to art class at the Celine show Sunday afternoon. Instead, designer Phoebe Philo showed one of the strongest collections of the season, touching on several ideas that have been in the air (including art inspiration, urban sportswear, even pleated skirts).

The inspiration: Art in the streets. Placed on each seat was a booklet of images of graffiti taken by French photographer Brassai, and excerpted from the book "Pour L'Amour de Paris."  

The look: High impact but with a purity and simplicity of design that's inherent to the brand. Bold, painterly strokes of primary color, shiny geometric accents and a new silhouette consisting of an elongated top over a pleated below-the-knee skirt.

Key pieces: Elongated black-and-white swirl print tank top over red brushstroke print pleated skirt. Oversized red-and-black swirl print tee over asymmetrical black-and-white micro-stripe skirt. Black tank dress with mesh skirt. Bold striped knits. Asymmetrical black skirt with low-slung O-ring belt. Black leather tank dress with brushed metal ring detail at the shoulder. Sculpted, hourglass-shaped black blazer over long white T-shirt, and white, micro-pleat skirt. Handbags resembling squished cubes, with shiny square hardware handles. Colorful, Vans-like, woven sneaker booties. Sling backs and mules balanced atop shiny metal orb or cylinder-shaped heels. Paint stroke-like jewelry.

The verdict: Evidence why Philo is one of the few true leaders in fashion today. This collection was not only a wildly creative visual statement, it was a direction forward — a new way to wear color and print.

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