by Jerry ElengicalSep 30, 2021
Architect Rem Koolhaas and his think tank AMO – long-time collaborators with Italian luxury house Prada – have conceptualised a refreshing abstract sequence of spaces for the latter’s Fall / Winter 2021 menswear digital show. The collection, titled Possible Feelings, reveals four interconnected rooms with different geometric footprints that fashion models navigate to showcase the collection.
The architecture unveils a set of ‘non-spaces’ that alludes to neither an interior nor an exterior setting. The rooms feature rectangular, circular, square and hexagonal layouts and are defined by inviting and seductive surfaces of marble, faux fur, resin and plaster.
Taking cues from the idea behind the collection which evokes the pleasure of tactility, the spatial design crafts a topography of seduction and desire.
The first room features a rectangular layout where deep red fur walls are contrasted by a glossy, black-coloured resin floor. Models walking in jacquard-knit bodysuits with block prints navigate the set through square doorways that link the four rooms.
A vibrant blue faux-fur floor enclosing white marble walls in a circular footprint defines the second room. The tactility in this space, compared to the first room, is inverted.
As per AMO, the idea behind the spaces does not draw from a particular reference. “They can pretend to be both interior and exterior, hard and soft, warm and cold: these are simultaneously both and neither, they allow absolute freedom of interpretation and expression,” explains a press statement from the Rotterdam-based research and design studio.
A square-shaped space draped in dark magenta fur walls and a muted green marble floor is the setting of the third room. A contrast in material arrangement emerges in the subsequent room where pastel pink plastered walls are juxtaposed on a hexagonal white fur floor.
The show marks the debut of Prada co-creative directors, Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons. In a video conversation, the two interacted with students from backgrounds of fashion, art, design, architecture, and philosophy discussing the showcase and the collaboration.
“This strange and abstract place that is not inside nor outside has material that leads a lot to tactility and sensuality,” says Prada. “In this case, architecture helped us to describe or to tell the feelings and the ideas that we had.”
Simons, who joined the Italian brand last year, adds: “Out of many dialogues, we concluded that it was not important for us to create a narrative or a ‘structural context’ for this collection but more of a ‘feeling context’.”
Through the showcase, a brilliant choreography of fashion and architecture has come together virtually, as the two disciplines merge to communicate stories of the human body, freedom and expression.