Jonathan Anderson certainly won't quit when it comes to bringing new, engaging ideas to the forefront of fashion - especially during a pandemic, and Anderson's Loewe Fall Winter 2021 show was no exception this season.
Debuting the collection via a newspaper that was sent out with a front-page header reading 'THE LOEWE SHOW HAS BEEN CANCELLED', the designer slash mastermind brought the brands FW21 collection forward in another format, one that plays on the commentary of how we interpret news today, and the ways fashion can engage us beyond the screen during worldwide lockdowns and COVID-19 restrictions.
Anderson has mastered the latter in the past year, tapping into collective, tangible experience and leaving the stuffy 'invite only' format fashion so often prescribes to at the door - inviting everyone to experience his most recent stroke of genius. “What I like about the idea of a newspaper is that sometimes we are so fixated, as a society, with the headline — but not what the headline means,” Anderson tells i-D. “Ultimately, what we have shielded away from in fashion is that this situation is cancelled. We are adapting to it, and the idea that we are going to consume ourselves with the idea of a digital reality is not a long-term solution.”
The way the fashion industry at large has pivoted during the pandemic is certainly a nod to the impending change that was being called for even pre-COVID-19, and just as we thought no one would listen, we were forced to. With a presentation that is so forward-thinking in format, the nods to fashion nostalgia are hard to miss. The newspaper format - something that can be likened to a relic - printed with imagery of legendary model Freja Beha Erichsen, whose hair has been coiffed by Guido Paolo and face painted by Dame Pat McGrath with casting by Ashley Brokaw signals to some of fashion's most consistent icons across all appointments.
The collection itself hits all the points of moving through old boundaries. Dressed up in a joyful palette of vibrant hues, geometry and draping marry, creating an optimistic atmosphere of what dressing might look like once the Northern Hemisphere are able to go out again. Abstract silhouettes are transformed into prints that circulate the body, meeting structural quilting and embellishments that nod to the height of glamour.
Colour block boots, chunky, exaggerated loafers, and reiterated versions of LOEWE's most classic bags in vibrant hues inject the collection, while chain elements are knotted and twisted in ways that add softness to the collection.
Alongside the imagery, the LOEWE newsprint edition contains excerpts from world’s best-selling living author, Danielle Steel's latest book titled The Affair. Referencing literary traditions and the ways in which figures such as Charles Dickens and Alexandre Dumas contributed to the serialization of famous works in nineteenth-century newspapers.
"You grip a newspaper, you turn the pages. Here, you see a show in the news — a fantasy. Hopefully, it will make you dream."