Isabel Marant goes back to the future for AW21
The label's latest collection looks to counterculture movements past and our present state of flux to inspire a more optimistic future.
Isabel Marant’s AW21 collection film was shot in an imposing concrete car park — a grey sculptural Brutalist landscape. The location was not really the Paris of Isabel Marant, a label whose shows have always exuded joy, glamour and escapism, but this was a show and collection about paradoxes and ambiguity.
This seasons looks were set against the retro-futuristic locale, setting the mood for Isabel Marant’s take on the future of fashion — which looks pretty bright. There was a sense of optimism from hippie florals and paisleys of the 60s, to 80s Memphis colour palettes and the 90s techno music.
It was all refracted through our current moment of flux, still stuck in lockdown but looking forward to a reemergence this summer. The opening looks saw Rianne Van Rompaey in a long, cream woolen dress with puffed fringed shoulders and cowboy boots; Mica Argañaraz in cream trousers and an electric double-breasted shirt; Anna Ewers in an embroidered jerkin and short shorts; Adut Akech in a cream and pink comfy sweater, which later appeared again, being worn as menswear by Leon Dame.
Which is to say this was a collection about blurring those boundaries, between retro and futurism, going out and staying in, glamour and comfort, masculine and feminine. It was a fantastically unrooted collection, which took so many different influences, visions and silhouettes and united them into a glorious whole for the strange world we’ve been living in, and the stranger one we’ll be emerging into this autumn.