Marine Serre’s Marée Noire on a dark day at the racetrack opens Paris Fashion Week
today Sep 24, 2019
Few designers have a more apocalyptic vision than Marine Serre, who named her latest show Marée Noire – or "oil slick" – and staged on a wet embankment inside Auteuil Hippodrome.
The weather gods were in synch with her dark vision staged on a chilly Tuesday, the first full day of shows in eight-day Paris Fashion Week. A steady drizzle covered the audience of 600, each of whom had been furnished with a small, cheap black umbrella. All finished with Serre’s signature half-moon print.
This was the second Serre collection in a row inspired by the apocalypse; last season the designer invited her fans to a show inside a giant underground chalk warehouse.
This season, the catwalk was in black PVC, as we huddled under our brolleys and the first models appeared. Serre likes a quirky cast and sent out some legendary veterans – like Belgian supe Elise Crombez. Even a pregnant girl appeared along with a couple of dogs.
Despite the coming environmental holocaust Serre’s survivors will nonetheless look thoroughly chic, albeit divided into four competing tribes.
The designer named four communities; the first all in black with moiré uniforms; embossed biker pants and plastic raincoats – the first of many recycled looks – a particular Serre obsession. One catsuit in neoprene worn by a lithe model was accessorized with S&M laced boots and face mask. Another lass in black overalls led an agitated black German shepherd.
Next up, a contingent in red – a desert community allegedly attired in scuba-djellaba dresses and a couple of perfectly cut coats that looked, oddly given the theme, more suited to afternoon tea in the Ritz than Burning Man. Then again, what’s wrong with a little artistic license?
For more gentile moments après la deluge, a third clan of recyclers – up-cycling lace, old sheets, nightgowns and bed linens into crochet dresses and several beautiful long white robes. While her final fourth gang, which she described as “tough executive tailored suits to be made out of towel,” featured some splendid mixed-media dresses in taut micro-fiber, on models with mini bags wrapped around their biceps.
In short, the vision might be depressing, but the clothes had enormous élan.
“My view of the apocalypse is of a black sea. And it is not far away. Climate wars, heat waves and mass extinctions!” explained the tiny designer, who makes up in guts what she may lack in height.
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