Outside the box

JW Anderson SS21
By Finn Blythe | Fashion | 28 September 2020

Following the precedent set by his previous menswear collections, Jonathan Anderson delivered SS21 in a box. Conceived in collaboration with London-based design studio OK-RM, this particular box came wrapped in newspaper and book-ended by Oscar Wilde quotes. The collection itself unraveled from within, a few turns of a copper coin (provided) freeing a contents of looks and photographs by Lewis Ronald interspersed among vibrantly coloured card.

Inspired by the bold lines of American post-minimal artist Richard Tuttle, the idea is an interactive experience: perforated lines encourage rips and folds, cards are to be hung, cut or glued, the whole thing can be taken out, re-arranged and put back together in order of one’s choosing. In a show environment usually dominated by strict order and exact timings, this was about relinquishing control and handing over the reigns.

That same sense of liberation ran through the clothes, too. This was fashion to have fun with (and in), moving with a lightness and precision that never wavered. Embroidery and other decorative interventions featured heavily throughout, as did bold, exaggerated silhouettes that juxtaposed a range of fabrics and textures. For a man with the world-load of Anderson, he appeared remarkably calm in an accompanying video, echoing the cool, calm sentiment of his new collection and, with an air of quiet defiance, claiming that, “Creativity will always win, no matter what.”

GALLERYCatwalk images from JW Anderson SS21