Browse all

The concept of Gucci's SS20 show explained

Power, individuality and fashion

The concept of Gucci's SS20 show explained Power, individuality and fashion

For the past few seasons, Alessandro Michele’s Gucci has consistently remained one of the most sought after brands, which has not only been evident through the quantity of Gucci in street style images, but through the amount of sales the brand has made. For the past year the brand has been on a high from its growing sales that have almost double in numbers is only now beginning to return to its normal pace. So as a result, many people have been questioning what’s next for the brand, will it continue on it’s pace of maximalism? And how long will it last? 

Yesterday Michele aptly responded to all those questions with a collection that was as scaled back as it was referential to Gucci in the period of the 90’s, and although he wanted to create a collection using an alternative voice, he of course would not depart without a story. 

The show took place in a pristine room that was divided by aqua green conveyor belts and coloured by red lighting, but as the metal doors closed and the lights flickered it soon revealed a full white clinical like space.

Not long after a few models came out on conveyor belts, wearing variations of straight jackets. 

You may also like

The visuals, though at first might have seemed daunting, was in reference to the concept of biopolitics - a term made popular by French philosopher Michel Foucault. In summary, biopolitics is the power over life and bodies. It includes, but is not limited to, the idea of the government having the control over bodies for example in the case where the government exerted force over biopower against abortion laws in the United States. It is also a concept that values the bodies of some more than others based on the economy - an able bodied, muscular white man, valued much more than a down syndrome or disabled black woman. It is a term originated in the 1950’s and was often used by Nazi’s as a way to attempt to explain that people of different races were inferior to whites as a result of genetics. 

With this notion of opening his show in forms of straight jackets, Michele shines a light on how the concept of biopolitics affects and restricts us all as a society, and questions whether fashion, in it’s vast variety of forms, shapes and colour can offer itself as a form of resistance through a celebration of individuality and diversity.  

In the same way, after the procession of white garments, Alessandro offered a collection, which could be classified as his group of protestors, who protest against the social norms of biopolitics with purple suits, bright pink coats and even additions of sexual humour with lace-inset slip dresses, black vinyl chokers and a few models carrying feather whips as accessories. And although the colours and patterns were at maximum volume, to the surprise of many, the designer decided to keep the silhouettes clean and simple as to keep his references to the brand in it’s earlier ages, which will also help with commerciality and production .