• Text Lakeisha Goedluck
  • 9th June 2019

For Derek Jarman

When it comes to an Art School show, you can always expect theatrics. For SS20, creative directors Eden Loweth and Tom Barratt invited their audience to cross dimensions and venture into an otherworldly domain. Models with ice-white eyes were no longer human, but rather “deities” as the show notes described them – sent to communicate Art School’s vision of diversity and inclusivity.

Drawing inspiration from director Derek Jarman’s picturesque cottage and surrounding garden in Dungeness, England, this collection was all about breeding beauty from barrenness. Entitled Modern Nature, the design duo invited artist Richard Porter to create specialist sculptures for the occasion – hair was decorated with shingle and clay pieces meant to mimic the findings from Jarman’s home as the cast made its way down the catwalk to the ethereal vocal of Anna Calvi, performing live on the catwalk.

Structural hi-shine blazers worn without clothing underneath were paired with flowing silk trousers for a silhouette that looked ultra-sensuous. A leopard-print corset with spaghetti straps was layered over a utilitarian shirt for a subversive take on gendered dressing, while ball gown-esque creations burst with sequins as if covered in opulent shrubbery. As always, this was an earnest celebration of queerness, expressed through decadent, non-conformist designs.