Back in December 2020, Balenciaga and Demna Gvasalia invited fashion to experience their very own video game-style show, Afterworld: The Age of Tomorrow. Leading users through a dystopian future, from a concrete Balenciaga store through to streets complete with flying buses, a magical forest and a closing scene akin to The Sword and the Stone, Gvsalia presented the French brand's take on the virtual future fashion is heading towards. Now they've released the accompanying campaign, which tells a tale of love in augmented reality.
A sea of 3D rendered figures line up in identical black suits, inside a grey and pretty depressing room representative of their reality on planet earth in a not too distant future. They wait for their turn to wear virtual reality glasses, which, when put on, make life all that much brighter. We follow our protagonist as he enters the Afterworld, joining characters dressed in the Balenciaga A/W 21 collection - from a NASA suit to the bright yellow faux fur coat reminiscent of Big Bird from Sesame Street. Here he finds his beloved, but just before they kiss, his glasses are pulled off.
Back IRL, however, his love interest seeks him out. As they kiss, they glitch through the 37 looks from the collection. The message this season? 'Live to Love.'
The campaign was directed and produced by video game developer Qantic Dream, and created by using motion capture to create animated versions of real-life people.