MANIFESTO

#63

CHANGE OF SPACE

capital b

2023.05.31

Text by Chiara Cappelli

Balenciaga’s Spring 24 collection is a long observation of the metropolitan movement that normalizes the way people dress for the street, fusing the French fashion house’s connection to real life. 

A constant metropolitan movement, a continuous traffic of people dressed entirely Balenciaga roam the Parisian streets, presenting Capital B with a quick pace and a brisk rhythm. Demna for Spring 24 studies sophistication and refinement to create essential garments with over and harmonious shapes, while celebrating the rich history of the Maison. Avenue George V, in Paris, begins the story that tells the collection: we find ourselves in front of the facade of the building at number 10, Christopher Balenciaga’s well-known “Le Dix,” where he himself started the brand’s legacy in 1937. An essential place, which expresses from the first scene the French character, elegant and sophisticated, and the need to apply Balenciaga’s schemes to everyday life. The video illustrates classic situations that happen every day outside the building involved: Parisians exit and enter the doorway, scurry down the sidewalk, cross and intertwine with each other, some fast, in a hurry to get to an appointment, and some calmly proceed on their daily walk. There are those who walk their dogs, those who wait for cabs, those who return home and those who leave to go to the office; couriers unload packages and the motorcyclist stops for a break. The insistent traffic in front of Number 10 presents Capital B, normalizing and describing Balenciaga as the only way to dress on the city streets. The seasonal elements of ready-to-wear meet the sophistication of the Garde-Robe line, resulting in a uniform fit for the hot morning sun, the sudden summer storm, and the nighttime evenings.

The result is an observation of metropolitan motion, fusing Balneciaga’s nexus with the pulse of real life in real time.

BALENCIAGA SPRING 24.

Capital B begins with classicism and elegance: a total black jacket with strong lines, tight at the waist with stiff, pointed shoulders, paired with a black turtleneck and a long skirt in the same color. This is followed by a series of dark looks that make the people wandering around the city of Paris like fascinating and mysterious beings, part of a community that respects the Maison’s codes. Long silhouettes skim the ground, shoulders are oversized, and the hood becomes essential. The garments reflect everyday Parisian life, made up of chaos and order, turmoil and distinction: the squares of the sweatshirts symbolize the density of urban dynamism, while the seemingly simple pieces indicate ordinary gestures. Refinement meets playful elements, such as the towel skirt or the biker boot that turns into a real pantashoe, combining practicality and demi-couture; it is an austere yet fun collection. The darkness of Capital B is punctuated with yellow details and entire fiery red looks that appear as splashes of color in the video, disrupting the harmony of the neutral hues of the landscape. The story staged by Balenciaga concludes with a series of garments suitable for the chicest Parisian evenings: a long light dress with a deep V-neck is followed by fitted silhouettes, first presented in the dark variant, then transformed into cascades of sequins and shimmering bangs. To complete the looks, large mesh bags suitable 24/7 alternate with more classic models such as the Locker Medium North-South Hobo Bag and the Hourglass Hinge; shoes mutate their shape into entire pants and the toe of sabots become extra elongated upward. Dark sunglasses with a futuristic shape emphasize the impenetrability of the Balenciaga characters, who walk in front of “Le Dix” like human beings from an unknown universe. 

 

The video is directed in one continuous shot by Mau Morgó and punctuated by BFRND’s rework of Édith Piaf’s “Sous le Ciel de Paris”. It presents an everyday situation, placing the French Maison within real life, which at the same time immediately appears as a picture of unreal Paris. Normality becomes walking the dog wearing a long coat and sponge skirt and making deliveries by bicycle in oversized jackets. Perhaps Capital B is a daydream, where the dynamism and chaos of the French capital are transformed into aesthetic rigor and total harmony imposed by Balenciaga codes.

BALENCIAGA SPRING 24.

VERSACE JEANS COUTURE

METROPOLITAN NOCTURNES

2024.04.15

Drawing inspiration from the evocative work of Philip-Lorca DiCorcia, Metropolitan Nocturnes – the new Versace Jeans Couture campaign – tells the intertwined lives of four distinct individuals. Each character navigates the interaction born from the energy of Miami and their own inner landscapes.

FASHION

HIGH&LOW

2024.03.13

Through a series of exclusive interviews, Kevin Macdonald sheds new light on the creative genius of John Galliano, from his prodigious student days at Central St. Martins in London to his tenure at Dior, culminating in the 2011 incident. A kaleidoscopic portrait of one of the greatest cultural icons of the 2000s.

COLLECTION

Exceptional Frenchness

2024.03.12

Hedi Slimane perfectly balances the refined with the casual. The tweed riding jackets reinvent the Celine codes, while romantic trenches lighten the spaces of Salle Pleyel.

SAINT LAURENT

MASCULINE GRACE

2024.03.06

Anthony Vaccarello revisits classic menswear with a contemporary twist. The suits are roomy, soft, detached from the body, often in lightweight and sheer fabrics, sometimes layered. Saint Laurent’s georgette and satin are enveloped in a shadowy color palette.

FASHION

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

2024.03.06

Miu Miu delves into our individual life lexicons. The collection unfolds with a diverse array of interpretations of traditional uniforms and attire; surgeons, assistants, teachers, and waitresses parade down the runway. Miuccia Prada’s dark youth is captured in its tight proportions and contrasting hues. A futuristic prelude sets the stage, introducing viewers to the complexities of human memory.