Spinning car wash brushes by artist Lara Favaretto filled the space at the Maison de l’UNESCO in Paris for the Loewe S/S 19 show. They tickled and brushed any nervous individual trying to find their seat, much to the crowd’s delight. Vintage record players rotated on the floor of the space, each cradling ceramics by Ryoji Koie, and a semi-naked man pootled about the space, checking in with the equipment. A closed room of bubbles was within the space too, bubble machines emitting constant orbs. It felt soothing, the rhythm of each mechanism providing a calming energy. These oscillations were harmonised by J.W. Anderson's referencing of manual craft techniques for an entirely confident and texturally beautiful collection.
Natural materials, in the likes of silk, hessian cotton and floral raffia, took on an elegance and irreverence here. Leather fringing and paddle neck pieces saw the elegantly crafted Loewe woman given an Anderson accent of kink, but Prairie sleeves, patchwork halter-neck dresses and crochet weavings were true to the earthen, honest aesthetic.
The whirring of the various art installations mirrored the kinetic energy within the garments; bursts of ostrich feathers, swinging heavy raffia bags, dynamic tent volumes and knitted bishop sleeve all seemed to carry a motion, as if each item was creating a hum or flow. A shirt dress with pockets of fringing was a whimsical and delightful addition to the silent orchestra underway. Muslins and suedes brought welcome tactility as if grounding the garments amidst the tempo. The buckled boots also added a weight and you could see editors zooming in on their iPhones as the striped versions came by. A biscuit coloured single-breasted suit, with a white collar, helped punctuate the collection, adding a formal line and structure amongst the organised chaos of fabrication and flux. Thank God for Loewe's rustic refinement - much needed on the Paris schedule this season.