Models In Motion

Film is walking all over the conventional catwalk this season as designers with ideas on innovation show their spring/summer ’09 collections via videos.

Design house Modernist produced a short film called Interference, made in collaboration with SHOWstudio’s Future Tense project, at London Fashion Week. Directed by Lorna Lavelle, the three-minute black-and-white reel shows garments in full motion while creating a vague storyline of a modern day kind of Marie Antoinette who seemingly delights in her slithering black, slightly Gothic garb.

Designers Steve J & Yoni P, who also rest under the futuristic wings of SHOWstudio, presented a delicate and fairy-like collection that included plenty of whimsical baby doll dresses with a magic-dusting of bright color. For added impact, their slips and whisps were preluded by a reception that included a harpist and the screening of Figure .09, a film created by Jeon Seung Hwan. The short featured neon bright lights and day glo shining on black, as a dancer dressed in an illuminated white draped dress twisted through blasts of color.

Like Future Tense, artist turned designer David David stays true to his fine art roots by showing his collection of rainbow-bright printed pieces on a film that’s a cross between an ’80s pop video and a gallery space. The all-white background perfectly complements his graphic Op Art bombers, leggings and oversized tees.

It’s not just the designers toting the slick medium either. Journalist and filmmaker Diane Pernet has championed the wonders of film with her A Shaded View on Fashion Film screening collections of fashion in film. She tells us: “I remember several years ago there was no fashion film festival, like there is now, and the arena was rather small. But I think that film in fashion is a really strong direction that designers are starting now.”

Of course, there will always be luminaries who got there first. Beloved pioneer Martin Margiela‘s Ete 2007 following a model through the streets of Paris to showcase his spring/summer ’07 collection. The film lingers on details to illustrate the beauty and innovation for which Margiela is famed. And, where Margiela goes no doubt others will follow, so expect many more takes of fashion on screen. Look books that move, fabric you can hear, all coming directly to your laptop. Though the film has only just started rolling for the industry, at London’s spring/summer ’09 collections it’s already a wrap.

—Erica Crompton

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