Martin Margela: five of his revolutionary shows

The most mysterious inventor of modern fashion

Today marks the 65th birthday of the Belgian fashion designer, founder of the French fashion house Maison Margiela Martin Margiela.

Spring-summer 1989. Covered faces and bloody footprints 

October 23, 1988. Martin Margela holds his first show at Cafe de la Gare. Even then, the faces of some models were covered with fabric masks — the designer wanted all the attention of the audience to be directed to clothes. He will use this unification technique in the following shows, covering the models’ faces with scarves, false bangs and black stripes on their eyes. Even before going to the podium, the models dipped the soles of their shoes in red paint — during the penetration, «bloody» traces remained on the white coating. Then, tops were sewn from the canvas that covered the podium for the next collection. 

Мартин Маржела: пять его революционных показов

Spring-summer 1990. Playground show

Margela’s brilliant ideas are often associated with financial constraints. How to hold a show if there is simply no budget for it? Margela’s team found a playground in the criminal 20th arrondissement of Paris and, with the permission of the district administration, began to prepare a show there. Invitations for guests were drawn by local kids, they also occupied the front row, applauded the models, jumped on their hands, screamed and fooled around in every possible way. After 30 years, Martin Margela will say that it was the most magical moment in his career. 

Мартин Маржела: пять его революционных показов

Spring-summer 1993. Collection of old theatrical costumes

From the very beginning, Margela’s fashion was based on the idea of recycling old things — simply because there was no money for new materials. The famous T—shirt made of a plastic bag, a sweater made of eight socks, vests made of torn posters or broken plates — this list can be continued for a long time. The basis for the spring-summer 1993 season were old theatrical costumes and petticoats for ballroom dancing. The collection was divided into two parts — black and white. They were shown at the two ends of the Montmartre Cemetery. 

Мартин Маржела: пять его революционных показов

Spring-summer 1998. «Flat» collection and show without models  

There are no models on the podium. Instead, the designers of Maison Martin Margiela come out to the public — in white coats and with hangers in their hands, as if this is not a fashion show, but an auction. This time, Margela wanted to work with the geometry of things and a flat cut. He took, for example, an old jacket, ripped it open and took it apart, achieving a flat design that would form a streamlined silhouette. A white T-shirt from a shopping bag appeared at the show again, as in one of the first Margel collections. 

Мартин Маржела: пять его революционных показов

Autumn-winter 2000. Fashion XXL

In the new millennium, Margela came with an oversize and layering, anticipating how we would dress in 15 years. The collection was called «La mode du XXL» — the designer really worked with mannequins of the 78th size, putting knitwear and felt on them. So it turned out huge sweaters, jackets and coats. It seemed as if several more layers of clothing were put on under the things — in fact, there could be, for example, only one thin dress. There were also jeans in the collection, as if they had been bought in a men’s clothing store of large sizes. In front, they were fastened with a hook and sat exactly on the figure — in 2012, the collector’s item was repeated in the collection of Maison Martin Margiela & H&M.

Мартин Маржела: пять его революционных показов

Galkina Alyona

Original content from the site