The end of the year is bringing about seismic shifts in the fashion industry that are sliding by so fast, it's hard to keep track. From Alessandro Michele's abrupt departure from Gucci and the folding of Raf Simons' eponymous label, who would have suspected there'd be more? Today, it's been revealed that Ann Demeulemeester has revealed a new creative director; Ludovic de Saint Sernin.
This decision marks a shift for the Claudio Antonioli-owned brand which has been run by an in-house design team up until now. The previous creative director, Sébastien Meunier departed in 2020.
Like the brand's namesake, 27 year old De Saint Sernin was born in Belgium and raised in Paris. Educated at l’ESAA Duperré, he worked for prominent French houses before launching his own label in 2017. The hedonism of his aesthetic and binary-breaking approach quickly got him noticed.
The images accompanying the release feature De Saint Sernin in archival Ann Demeulemeester pieces that suggest he will take the brand in a similar direction for this appointment.
The press statement and Instagram caption read “authorship and autobiography gain centrality, as Ludovic de Saint Sernin shapes the Ann Demeulemeester traits around his vision, proclivities and individuality, offering a first-person reading and the connection with today’s audience that comes from that.”
Demeulemeester has retained an unusual but friendly relationship with the label. She stepped away from her namesake brand almost a decade ago and oversaw an archive exhibition giving her blessing.
Who is the brand designed for?
Demeulemeester designed with power couple Robert Mapplethorpe and Patti Smith in mind as muses. Her shows were draped with fluidly constructed tailorings and slouched on shirting and her signature entwining of butch and femme with leathers and feathers.
Similar to Demeulemeester, De Saint Sernin's, 'sensuality, tension, silhouette, fluidity, wildness and a graphic feel are defining pillars.' He has been deemed an 'equal opportunity nudist,' putting all genders in sheer suits and crystallised mesh tanks.
De Saint Sernin will showcase his debut collection for Ann Demeulemeester in March 2023 for the Fall/Winter 2023 season at Paris Fashion Week.