vor 3 years

This year, we were trapped.

Clubs were closed. So were the bars. Museums, boutiques, and offices. For the majority of a full year, any kind of fantasy we typically could create and cling to here in Berlin was taken from us, almost overnight. And then the borders closed, and we were caught inside our own heads even further, glancing at a world immediately around us that seemed to leave no room for fantasy.

Enter the creatives, namely the fashion designers, who gave us an opportunity to see deeper into their worlds and creative processes this year than they ever had before. Below, we pay homage to those opened the gates to other realities in an otherwise closed-off world, who reminded us of the important of dreaming, of imagination, and of fantasy. With their various visualizations, some artists gave us the opportunity to take a glimpse into other worlds that seemed mystical, from the past, or from a far ahead future. They remind us where our imaginations can take us, even if our bodies currently cannot. 

MAISON MARGIELA takes us underwater
Co-ed collection SS21 by John Galliano
Photographed by Britt Lloyd

Sweet Echo, sweetest nymph, that liv’st unseen Within thy airy shell By slow meander’s margent green, And in the violet-embroidered vale. ” From John Milton’s “Comus”

Margiela takes us into a world deep below the surface, permeated with a peace and calm that we miss exploring. The collection appears in a long-forgotten, underwater world, in which nymphs have found a reality all their own. As if drawn in oil onto canvas, the mythical creatures move weightlessly through the water, their gossamer clothes drifting with the gentle currents. A picture of silence and bliss. 

IRIS VAN HERPEN ‘s New-Age Angels
Couture Collection 2020
Photographed by Carla van de Puttelaar

With mesmerizing elegance that doesn’t seem to be from this world, Iris Van Herpen seduces us. With her incomparable aesthetic, she creates beings that are as graceful as they are intimidating, of pure beauty, enveloped in light, delicate fabrics that seem to become one with the wearer. Weightlessly, the angelic beings float and hover around the void of nothing.

LUDOVIC DE SAINT SERNIN touches us- finally!
“The Nearness of You” Choreography and Movement by Davide di Giovanni

“It’s not the pale moon that excites me, that thrills and delights me, it’s just the nearness of you.” from Nancy Wilson’s “The Nearness of You

Ludovic de Saint Sernin is gives a marvelous dance performance, choreographed from a member of the Sydney Dance Company, characterized by such sensitive movements, captured in a voyeuristic way in black and white, that you can almost feel the touches … or perhaps we ‘ve just really been craving that new human touch … (just us …?)

MARINE SERRE takes us on a voyage to another world
“Amor Fati” Directed by Sacha Barbin and Ryan Doubiago

My formula for greatness in a human being is amor fati: that one wants nothing to be different, not move forward, not move backward, not in all eternity to merely bear what is necessary, but love it .” From Friedrich Nietzsche

The French designer Marine Serre creates a parallel world through ” Amor Fati ” (translation: love of fate, or philosophically-speaking, eternal recurrence.) It is a film in which the main characters (one of them being the goddess-cum-musician.) .) Sevdaliza) seem trapped, yet at the same time, detached from the applicable rules of the others. If Stanley Kubrick were alive to see this, he certainly would have dressed his characters in Marine Serre. 

BALENCIAGA creates their own fantasy video game 
“Afterworld – The Age of Tomorrow”

Afterworld ” presents a virtual, post-future world, taking us through different zones. It begins from an underground city, recalling the days when cities were vivid and alive. We then happen into some well-dressed raving situations. The story closes within a Game of Thrones type setting. Wandering around, the pawns show off the new Balenciaga collection, and arouse some nostalgic feelings about all our SIMS characters that may still be there, waiting for us to come play with them. 

MISBHV traps us in a nightmare- don’t wake us!
“The Origin of Meaning II” created by Rafal Olbinski

 Leave me to my own absurdity.” from Sophocles’ “Antigone”

We find ourselves alone in a forest, it is a fog-covered night. The setting is reminiscent of a horror movie, paired with a beautiful and calming interplay of movement and fabrics and disappearing and reappearing figures crouching and walking, fleeing and returning. The opening of the film takes a political bend as well, with the words WITHOUT A WOMAN OUR WORLD WOULD COLLAPSE INTO CHAOTIC NOTHINGNESS. The film is created by Polish surrealist artist Rafal Olbinski, at a time when the women of Poland are fighting and protesting against the conservative government’s moves to strip them of reproductive rights.

ALEXANDER MCQUEEN Sometime, Somewhere, Looking Back, it will be Now
Spring Summer 2021 Collection 
“First Light” by Jonathan Glazer

What would a list of fashion fantasy be without the King who started it all? Alexander McQueen got his roots in creating worlds on the runway and within his collection. One of my favorite pastimes is watching old shows of his. All are narrative with specific time and place. To end our journey through different fashion realms, we present First Light, which leaves a lot of room for interpretation. It is beautiful, yet at the same time, intimidating and thought-provoking. It feels like a post-apocalyptic Modern Middle Age parallel world (is that not what we are living in, what with a plague?) There is a certain gravity. Tears flow, but you can also see the indifferences and carelessness accepted, even when drenched in mud and oil. Perhaps this is a metaphor for the different emotions we are all going through this year: loneliness, emptiness, boredom, and fear. On the flip side, we have the ability to hone in on our own creativity, and have found strength in ourselves as well as in our chosen communities. 

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