It is literally a job in itself trying to keep up with all the goings-on during New York Fashion Week. As I take my job as a professional hack seriously, I spent the better part of the weekend groping through images and articles from the seven-day celebration of all things couture, and was surprised to find more than a few high-end nods to notable horror films. At least that’s what I saw through my bloodshot eyes.
It all started when I came across stills from the Alexander Wang Fall/Winter 2015-2016 collection (above). The models, clad in head-to-toe black, instantly made me think of Takashi Shimizu’s classic, Ju-on. According to the makeup artist Diane Kendal and hairstylist Guido Palau, their inspiration was purely derived from heavy metal and a desire to keep things “gloomy”. Sure it was. Are you a fan of footwear fashion forward enough to stomp over your enemies bones? Take a peek at the shoes that propelled down Wang’s dark runway, here.
Serbian designer Marko Mitanovski sent an army of monochrome models down his runway in London this week covered in black paint (and a single walker covered in white paint), wearing designs made from leather and latex. Mitanovski’s show looked like what I imagine Pinhead and his otherworldly gang of Cenobites from Hellraiser would look like if they were roaming the streets of Paris.
More horrifying Hellraiser drama was brought to the NY Fashion Week catwalk by Italian costumer and designer, Antonio Urzi (above). Urzi’s show was nothing short of a visual feast for the eyes as well as inspirational. Uzi not only dedicated the show to models with disabilities, but also featured many stunning models with disabilities on his runway.
In addition to his Hellraiser homage, Urzi’s show also featured iron-clad models in various states of battle-ready couture. Like the one above that must have sprung from Urzi during an Aliens/H.R. Giger spiked fever dream.
As a forever fan of all things Giallo, I can only guess that UK designer Gareth Pugh must have binge-watched the ABC’s of the film genre (think Argento, Bava, Cavara), and was inspired to create his coven-ready couture collection just in time for your next upscale Black Mass. Further confirmation of Pugh’s intent was showcased in a gripping four and a half minute video (seemingly plucked from Argento’s own playbook) that opened the show by Pugh’s long-time collaborator, filmmaker Ruth Hogben. Surreal stills from the entire show can be seen here.
Last up is the bizarre and nearly genderless Hood by Air show from young designer Shayne Oliver. If these images below from Oliver’s runway don’t remind you of things that might go bump in the night during a sleepover at David Lynch’s house, I’m not sure what will. Think I’m stretching the horror movie vibe of this post by including David Lynch? Think again.
Behold, the Club Kids of the future. As if the future isn’t terrifying enough. When asked about his key reference points for the collection, Oliver nodded his 27 year old head in the direction of 1970’s pimp style and prison uniforms. Two inspirations that you never thought would end up coordinated with nylon stocking facemasks. Unless you happen to be a vintage pimp or a current resident of a correctional facility.
Well, that wraps up DTB’s coverage of all things horrifying from New York and London’s Fall/Winter Fashion Week shows! Long may the lure of horror films continue to linger on the runways of the world.