I’ll be the first to admit I’m not really tuned into the world of haute couture, so this may be just my personal takeaway… but I’m actually surprised it took so long for designers to incorporate severed heads, baby dragons, mutant eyeballs and a mad scientist’s lab equipment into their latest clothing lines.
— gucci (@gucci) February 25, 2018
It’s true that horror and high fashion often walk hand-in-hand (no pun intended). Some runway shows can be pretty damn surreal, and often deliberately shocking — and that’s been happening long before designers like Alexander McQueen triggered gasps with bizarre theatrical staging and macabre motifs.
For example, back in 1986, legendary director Dario Argento horrified attendees at a Trussardi show by staging the bloody, giallo-inspired “murder” of a model… whose body was then wrapped up in plastic and dragged off the stage.
But when the Gucci crew hit the catwalk at Milan Fashion Week to unveil Alessandro Michele’s Fall/Winter 2018-19 line, they also ripped more than a few pages from the horror playbook… hell, they lifted entire chapters.
Michele and company treated the audience to fantasy creatures like woodland sprites and slinky serpents, eyeballs growing from hands (like the “Pale Man” in PAN’S LABYRINTH), models cuddling baby dragons… and, in the most extreme stunt of all, carrying incredibly realistic silicone duplicates of their own heads.
Presenting looks from the #GucciFW18 fashion show by #AlessandroMichele. Inspired by ‘Cyborg Manifesto’ by D.J. Haraway, the collection features visual and special effects by creative factory Makinarium who made replica heads of the models who carried them. #mfw pic.twitter.com/ld11OuaME3
— gucci (@gucci) February 23, 2018
According to Vogue, Michele collaborated with high-end Italian FX company Makinarium — whose recent work includes Ridley Scott’s ALL THE MONEY IN THE WORLD and the new TOMB RAIDER reboot — to create the amazingly creepy “accessories” to his designs.
Backstage at the Gucci Fall Winter 2018 fashion show by Alessandro Michele, new men’s and women’s looks. pic.twitter.com/tI6xo1n7Re
— gucci (@gucci) February 24, 2018
“He had very precise ideas about what he wanted to achieve,” said Makinarium co-founder Leonardo Cruciano, in an interview with the iconic magazine. “It was a great collaboration; he’s a true artist, with a real passion, a fantasy so intense and inspiring it pushes you forward.”
He’s right, actually — I’m feeling pretty inspired myself. How about you?