Marni's enfants terribles
Despite the somewhat sinister decor – a dark cube into which the audience piled, only to be encircled by concrete walls covered in baffles – Marni's Fall/Winter 2019-20 runway in Milan started with promising tranquillity on Saturday. The first models, dressed in loose suits and comfortable coats in curly wool, walked the runway accompanied by the soft notes of "Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune".
But quickly something seemed to snap, as Debussy morphed into the syncopated rhythms of electronic music. From this point on, the apparently barely conscious models descended the catwalk as though they were sleeping standing up; pale, lunatic-like figures with nightcaps perched on their heads, wrapped in silk pyjamas or jumpers and soft, cozy shorts.
Most of the models drifted down the runway in clothes which appeared to be too big for them, their hands disappearing beneath the long sleeves of their mohair pullovers, a maxi-scarf draped around their shoulders, dragging along the floor. Shirts were worn in pairs, one buttoned into the other as though by accident. Layers of parkas were piled on top of each other over accordion-like pants, while all-engulfing sweaters were pulled over shirts – the clothes seemed difficult to contain, spilling out in every direction.
A certain eccentricity ran through the collection, with animal prints popping up here and there throughout, on silk shirts, on pants, jackets and orange leopard-print coats, even putting in an appearance on an argyle pullover. But these wild overtones still channelled a kind of childlike playfulness, as evidenced by the faux blue or red zebra-print fur used in giant mittens and long scarfs.
Indeed, designer Francesco Risso himself described his bedraggled creatures as "the enfants terribles of Paradise".
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