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The ANTI-SOCIAL show of Vetements

A reflection on the FW19 collection

The ANTI-SOCIAL show of Vetements A reflection on the FW19 collection

“I realize there is no privacy. When I’m on public transport, doing work on my phone, I often see people over-looking it, or taking photographs of me.”

In the background the natural scenery of the French National Museum of Natural History, on the catwalk walks a collection which not many would be ready to bet on, and behind the scenes an angry, polemical designer, who won't stay quiet. 

Yesterday evening, at 8:00 pm, Paris was preparing for the Vetements fashion show. Ready to witness it there was an audience with a quick grimace, always ready to judge because, at the end, "Vetements is dying".

A 15-minute-long show in which it was easy to recognize Demna, his black nuances, the leather, the grunge and the pale models with a weathered face, they shouted "I do not care, I have still to speak my mind". And so he did: "ANTI-SOCIAL is the name of this FW19 collection and makes fun of the social media era". Once again, Vetements reveals itself as the brand of memes, where implicit messages alternate with too explicit ones, where a Steve Jobs opens the show with a black shirt with the phrase: 

"Warning: what you are about to see will disturb you. There is a dark side to humanity the censors won’t let you see, but we will. View it at your own risk.”

Making fun of one of the greatest revolutionaries in human history is not easy, but Demna can do it with strategy. The public doesn't even have the time to be amazed that immediately comes another look ready to hit the mark in its being a constant question. Asymmetrical dresses that look like a complex of rags, oversized hoodies with fake logos, leather belts, a red fanny pack made in collaboration with Eastpak and floral dresses. Here fashion is a reflection of discontent and politics, and the Gerogian designer recounts in this way his tormented past made of poverty, hunger and the escape from the ethnic cleansing of the Abkhaz separatists. But it also tells what today torments him:

“Our inspiration starts on the internet, that’s how we work. But we only see 20 percent of it—behind that is the part you don’t know about. I didn’t. So we found some people who know how to access the dark net, behind the wall you can’t see. I didn’t know about it, but you can buy guns, drugs, people, order things with kids—anything you want, with Bitcoin. It’s crazy, scary stuff. And you have perfect freedom to do it, because no one can see you, you have no identity.” 

To represent all this, there are models that take the role of kids in revolt, with inverted anarchist symbols, rags, unkempt hair, some extravagant and some eccentric, others with the face covered by a black ski mask. We can therefore understand that Demna's social media are his collections, he communicates through them, writes statements, denounces, reflects, and whoever wants to share his thoughts will choose, buy, photograph a Vetements item, otherwise not. 

"Fashion must not be superficial, the product can communicate something, I think the future of brands will be based on social involvement, otherwise they will not survive."