Nick Knight Interviewed on the Future of the Fashion Show

by SHOWstudio on 6 August 2020

The photographer speaks about how digital is the way to go for the fashion industry, in an interview by Alexander Fury for the Financial Times.

The photographer speaks about how digital is the way to go for the fashion industry, in an interview by Alexander Fury for the Financial Times.

Nick Knight has spoken about the future of the fashion show in an interview for the Financial Times, carried out by the paper's menswear critic, Alexander Fury. Fury explains how Knight's work for big houses like Burberry, Maison Margiela and Valentino in 2020 indicates the photographer's predilection for the digital, with fashion films and fly-on-the-wall documentaries filmed for Margiela and Valentino. Knight's Thomas Burberry Monogram campaign for Summer 2020 features a CGI Kendall Jenner, and Fury notes that this is a long-term interest for knight, recalling that five years ago he had interviewed Knight and the photographer had been interested in virtual models–which were then a pipe dream–even then.

A still from the Thomas Burberry Monogram Summer 2020 collection film.

Later in the interview Fury relates Knight's 90s fashion photography, which made full use of contemporary digital technology, to fashion's use of fashion film today. Just as digital technology pushed fashion imagery forward then, so too is film pushing fashion imagery forward now. 'Imagery was opening up in a totally new way,' Knight says in the article. 'It took about 150 years to get to the point it was when I first discovered it — then, almost overnight, it started to change into a totally different art form.'

As Fury explains, Knight thinks fashion film's popularity is linked to what Fury calls 'dissatisfaction across the industry vis-à-vis the limitations of the catwalk show.'

Knight says, 'The people I’m working with, whether it’s Riccardo [Tisci, chief creative officer of Burberry] or John [Galliano] or Pierpaolo [Piccioli] . . . They have such a desire to do something new, and not just fit into this system which has been the same since the 1940s or beyond, where people walk into a room in a new dress, walk up and down and walk back out again. There’s [sic] a billion different ways to create ideas and thoughts, so why is fashion nailed down to this method — arcane, out-of-date, totally unsustainable, completely against the contemporary feeling of what we want to be as a world?'

A still from the teaser for S.W.A.L.K., the documentary-style fashion film created by Knight for Maison Margiela.

Fury and Knight have a long history of working together, Fury having been fashion director of SHOWstudio from 2008-2012.



The Thomas Burberry Summer Monogram Collection

28 August 2020
Riccardo Tisci called upon Nick Knight and a host of British creatives to create Burberry's first CGI campaign, featuring supermodel Kendall Jenner.


17 July 2020
John Galliano called upon Nick Knight and SHOWstudio to realise a new proposal for Maison Margiela.

Of Grace And Light

21 July 2020
Pierpaolo Piccioli called upon Nick Knight to reimagine Valentino and the traditional fashion show format for the A/W 20 haute couture season.
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