It's often difficult to explain the appeal of Maison Martin Margiela to those outside of the fashion world. Maybe Margiela is the fashion equivalent of an insider's joke - the label-less label, unfinished detailing, deliberately cheap fabrics and extreme proportions, all seem a parody of what designer fashion represents. And well they should. Margiela's clothes are 'thinking fashion', imbued with obvious intellectual rather than monetary value. For many people, those four external white stitches are more of a status symbol than any number of loadsamoney logos.
Deciphering the codes of MMM to the uninitiated in the United Kingdom will become that much easier this summer, as London's Somerset House hosts Maison Martin Margiela '20' The Exhibition. Following 2008's Skin + Bone exhibition and the small matter of our own Fashion Revolution last summer, this latest installation at the new home of London Fashion Week chronicles two decades of enigmatic creation by one of fashion's most influential designers. Unveiled to critical acclaim at the MoMu, Antwerp and Haus der Kunst, Munich last year, for its London debut the exhibition has been specially reconfigured for the Embankment Galleries at Somerset House. Expect sliced-up Stockman dummies, acres of pristine white and nary a logo in sight when the exhibition (no doubt quietly) opens its doors on 3 June.