THE MARTIN MARGIELA YEARS
Posted on October 9, 2014 by Marco Maggetto
We are all happy about the Galliano’s rentree. Nothing is more alluring than mistakes converted into personal improvements. The fashion system, the pressure of creating something new 4 times a year, the raise and the fall. The forgiveness. But, does anyone really remember who Martin Margiela was? And what he has created along 90ies? The bashful fellow from Belgium, that never really appeared in public, radically changed the way fashion was conceived. Without him, no Rick Owens, no Damir Domas, no hundreds of other conceptual designers. Margiela just implanted the seed of a different way of making clothes. From rainy, but highly creative, Antwerp he moved to Paris and appointed at Jean Paul Gaultier. Few years and his own Maison was opened: strong, anti-Fashion, different. The very first defilees, as documented in a Arte Tv Documentary called “Anti-Fashion” that you can watch here , took place in a small scruffy apartment. After-show parties, where champagne and beer were sipped from plastic glasses, were unpretentious, young and optimistic: everybody were laughing and smoking, playing, having fun. No bloggers no selfies. Margiela, an atelier where everything was made conceptually. A place where shapes and silhouettes were not so important and perfection never foundamental.
Things at Martin’s were made in progress. A cloth was passing many hands before taking form and place in the collection. It was stressed, dyed, yellowed, aged and broken before becoming wearable. It was hybridized, sprayed in gold or silver, written, sewed with visible stitches. The fashion crowd fell immediately and success came along. On board for 15, Margiela never pay any advertising nor celebrity, keeping happy his costumers. Then big groups, big business arrived and conceptual, suddenly weren’t enough profitable. Anti-Fashion was not in fashion anymore and Martin didn’t want to adapt. And left. After some years in a bubbole, with very good moments, the House will revive under Galliano’s vision. Are we happy? Yes, but where is Martin?
Pictures below: moments of Maison Martin Margiela 90ies splendor.