For Hermes, fashion (week) must go on
Long coat in water-repellent cashmere broadcloth
Photos by Alex Van Hagen powered by MAC Center

For Hermes, fashion (week) must go on

MY LIPS ARE SEALED...SOMETIMES - Maurice Arcache (The Philippine Star) - April 14, 2021 - 12:00am

Fashion must go on, as did the opening of Fashion Week in New York, Paris and Shanghai amid the pandemic, dahlings.

Infused with a radiant mystery, power, and aura, cavalières, if not amazons, sashayed down the runway in Hermès’ fall/winter collection. For some women, being stuck in a rut and motionless in these uncertain times are purely abstract ideas, for they are all about movement.

Hermès’ latest collection is an expression of the desire to explore the sensuality of new mythologies. The checkered pattern works like a painting that gets right to the point, with a gesture as pure and simple as adorning the human form with rectangles.

Clothes are as suitable for nightlife as for everyday life.  A Clou Médor opens and closes a clasp; a suit is cut parka-style, ignoring the rules of tailoring.

The padded anorak makes an appearance, and though there are pants, they are cycling pants. In counterpoint, you can find trim on cashmere blankets. Long jackets, coats and ponchos with integrated scarves supply the protection one needs to feel strong, without ever hindering movement.

How can Hermès put on a fashion show in today’s world?

When times are challenging, they have challenged their own habits, connecting with other cities and other cultures. They have attempted to be creative together, albeit from a distance, and dared to do what they have always done with passion: initiate a dialogue with other art forms. They have innovated and produced a triptych:  more than a fashion show, it’s a living performance in three acts.

At the heart of this three-part performance was a socially distanced Paris Fashion Week at the Garde Républicaine, broadcast live on various media.

The “prologue” took place not in Paris but in New York, at the Armory Show, where choreographer Madeline Hollander started things off with a free interpretation of the movements gleaned from Nadège Vanhée-Cybulski’s collection.

At the end of the Paris show, it’ll head over to Shanghai, where dancers under the direction of choreographer Gu Jiani will conclude the triptych, injecting renewed energy and strength into the collection.

And finally, to preserve this utopian project (what could be more utopian than fashion?), Hermès asked Sébastien Lifshitz, a genre-crossing filmmaker steeped in modern dance and fashion, to film the last stages of the triptych’s conception.

Three singularly different approaches, creating a sequence is there a more satisfying way to inhabit the world together, palanggas?

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