In previous weeks, Balenciaga has rolled out its Spring/Summer 2020 campaign, a haunting and somewhat disturbing fast forward of what the world could look like in coming years. From the mind of Creative Director, Demna Gvasalia, it is a fashionable although absurd nod to the world’s problems. Now, this continual theme of political and climate unrest has come to a head at Paris Fashion Week for Fall/Winter 2020. Taking to the Cité du Cinema film studio complex in Saint Denis, a suburb north of Paris, the runway was flooded with front row seats almost completely submerged forcing guests to retreat to the third row.
On the catwalk, models were seen wearing boots or in some unfortunate cases, sky-high stilettos and trudged through the flowing water donned in new season silhouettes. The backdrop was lit with LED screens to reveal moving seawater and an inferno of red flames. For the creative director, it was reportedly a not-so-subtle nod to rising sea levels. And to not be a contradictory of itself – water is not a limitless resource after all – Balenciaga have also said it will return the water used back to the city.
As for the forthcoming collection, the Vetements founder drew from her gothic sensibilities and futuristic design cues with exaggerated tailoring and billowing silhouettes. Vampire-esque cloaks dragged along the runway while some models shuffled under pencil dresses. All-black was the predominate colour palette of choice with random pops of vintage print and fluorescent colour emerging in the form of full looks and accessories. Red eyes and stiff looks from models lent an additional touch of eeriness to the runway – perhaps a hypothesis of how we will all appear in the midst of a post-apocalyptic world.
At least we’ll be dress to the nines.
Watch the runway below.