Claire Barrow collection presentation S/S 2016 for LFW
Where would we be without technology? In what kind of world could we live? With these existential questions in her mind, British designer and ex Central Saint Martins student Claire Barrow showcased her spring/summer collection, Broken Machines, at the Institute of Contemporary Arts. Inspired by our subconscious and our increasing addiction to technology, Barrow portrayed her own dystopian modern reality.
In a gloomy dark set where the concept of underground subculture was brought to life, Claire Barrow’s phantom orchestra was playing instruments made out of random pieces of metal, while real musicians gave us a creepy yet beautiful saxophone and piano soundtrack accompanied by metallic resonators and synthesizers.
The presentation was vast, with 30 models brought together – some sitting, some standing, some lying down while playing their instrument – all pretty much staring into space, absent. A lot of skin was shown; some models wearing only painted leather high-waisted panties, or a suit with nothing underneath. There were feminine silk dresses, some glamorous and flounced, others more plain and undone. Further looks channeling heroin chic included stretched painted leggings and bodysuits, heavy leather and denim, and even a couple of mid season coats. Attention to detail and accessories have always characterised Barrow’s work and this time she opted for hand-knitted wire jewelry and, of course, her typical knee-high printed stockings.
Barrow’s signature illustrations where everywhere, this time as a twisted version of a Marc Chagall painting, featuring floating spirits and musical instruments, in a colour palette of grey, black, lilac, blue and green to help accentuate the feeling of a bitter-sweet nightmare.