On the 13th of February 2015 at 20:30 I had a creative epiphany. I woke up.
Brought to life by five virtuoso puppeteers, masked figures step onto the stage as a unique show, so intrguing in its bizzarity, unfolds in front of the spectators’ eyes. Moving to the sounds of Sergio Pizzorno‘s music, the puppets not only display a collection, but tell a story – one of breaking free from self-imposed restrictions and finally removing the protective coccoon that shields the creator from the outside world and its judgments and opinions.
Aitor Throup‘s new collection, presented as a part of London Collections Men Spring / Summer 2017, is a self-portrait in its purest form; a ritual deveiling of the London-based designer’s true self and a taking off of the mask of a false creative ego. Not unlike his previous collections – Mongolia, When Football Hooligans Become Hindu Gods, The Funeral of New Orleans, and On the Effect of Ethnic Stereotyping – it is highly considered and intricately executed. As the spectacle progresses through the stages – a prelude and three main acts, titled The Resting of the Past, Death and Rebirth, Confidence and Epiphany, and Unblocking and Aspirations: Ego Death, respectively – the narrative becomes more and more clear.
Four life casts of the designer’s own body, laid motionless to the sounds Stravinsky‘s The Rite of Spring, make for the sculptural installation at the reception. Wearing development prototypes of each of Throup‘s previous concepts, the bodies are piled on top of each other as if dead, symbolising the acceptance of the now. Shrouded in layers of ghost-like white paint, they convey a sense of disregarding the surface value in favor of the true value beneath the surface. Allowing the ideas to rest gracefully, the designer makes peace with his past so he can make a step towards the future – one his designs are ready for and already fit in perfectly.
The trans-seasonal prototypes presented as a part of the show will be realised as a fully commercially distributed collection which is already being developed for a January 2017 launch. The concept pieces, as well as their methods of presentation will be displayed and available for purchase as individually limited outfits at Dover Street Market in London from June 14th to July 6th 2016.