Fashion houses have made much of celebrity associations to stay current. But none have advanced the cultural and intellectual gravitas of fashion quite like Prada under her magnificence Miuccia. And for this year’s Milan Fashion Week, the conceptualizing was taken to a particularly spectacular level.
Taking over the Grand Hall of Deposito, the epic function space at Fondazione Prada, the brand’s Fall / Winter 2020 Womenswear show took place within a pair of hallucinatory “piazzas.” Each was created around the illusion of voided out space, to give the perception of floating in, well…nothingness. A statue of Atlas was perhaps was meant to suggest the socio-political-psychological weight we are currently carrying on the shoulders of the world, even in regards to our relationship to fashion.
Striking geometric flower imagery was meant to reference Vienna Secession architectural facades, some of which carried over into the clothes. And the new collection featured fringe skirts, boxy jackets, bohemian patterns, provocative but feminine sheer draping, elegantly delicate graphics and futuristic looking puffers. Which is quite a lot to pack into one—okay, two—season(s).
The show’s front row sported the requisite star/influencer power, including Emily Ratajkowski, Rachel Brosnahan, Susie Lau and Sinead Burke. But it was the conceptual setting, which ultimately raised questions about the public and private, the real and the imagined, that left the greatest mark on our psyches.
Curiously enough, it was all followed by a startlingly industry-shifting announcement, whereby Prada has named Antwerp’s own Raf Simons as Co-Creative Director with Miuccia. We are literally atwitter with excitement over the possibilities.