Friday, 4 March 2011

The Gaga Show - Nichola Formichetti's debut at Mugler

March 2nd 2011, from 9pm onwards, one could witness Nichola Formichetti's debut as creative director at Mugler via live stream on facebook.
The Mugler A/W 2011 RTW collection surely was one of the most anticipated events of Paris Fashion Week after Nichola Formichetti -  Lady Gaga's acclaimed stylist, fashion director of Vogue Japan, fashion director of Uniqlo and creative director of Dazed and Confused Magazine had been named creative director of  Mugler next to also newly appointed designer, Sebastien Peigné.

 After some additional Twitter frenzy over Lady Gaga walking Formichetti's show, quite a number of people logged on to facebook to watch the Mugler A/W 2011 RTW show live. Over 40 mins, one could peek behind the stage and watch numerous activities previous to the show from various camera angles. Admission, make-up, models, Lady Gaga, friend, muse and favorite pet of the stylist getting ready and practicing her last moves. Two of the titbits - may they have been spontaneous or rehearsed - were Lady Gaga announcing laconically that it would be even good press if she would vomit on stage and secondly that she just wants the public to say that she is a beautiful woman after the show (oh come on - still not over the polemic, are we?!).

The scenery for the runway was a mixture of an enchanted forest and a gothic cathedral, which set the stage for a show that ressembled a mixture between fashion, Lady Gaga self-promotion and a chaotic hide-and-seek game in dim flickering disco light. The models were half strutting, half stumbling on the platform wedges (the only one who mastered them effortlessly was Gaga) putting on a show that was composed of clutching along the pillars, lip synching a medley of Lady Gaga's latest album - featuring her "Born this Way" anthem- clenching their teeth, displaying their figurative claws and striking a vamp-y pose for the photographers. Check the official directors cut here.

Many of the garments of the show called “Anatomy of Change Femme – Mode Sans Frontiers,” featured Thierry Mugler's signature giant epaulettes, which had made the designer famous in the 80ies. Otherwise, the clothes featured a lot of sheer tops, or tops with sheer cut-outs revealing the bust or tiny synthetic bustiers. Skin tight membrane-looking clothes took turns with avant-gard garments which seemed futuristic and outlandish. Glossy elements were combined with natural textures - creating a look that made me think of the Borg of Starship enterprise - a fictive civilisation, which strives to be a superior race by sometimes brutally assimilating nature with technology. An association which might also be explicable by the fact that the Nichola Formichetti named Rick Genest aka "Zombie Boy"as his latest inspiration at the brand Mugler.

Nichola Formichetti, darling du jour of the industry surely gained some more momentum by this fabulous show and may just have promoted his vision of outlandish and eccentric beauty (I actually really think the time has come to pass the word gaga-esque as part of our vocabulary) a little more. Also, he managed to communicate his vision of the future of fashion brands, which is a seemless blending of showmanship, media communication, fashion, lifestyle and a sentiment, attitude and atmosphere at the same time.
The showmanship of the event was surely convincing and could live up to the hype. The limelight however was rather on Lady Gaga and the overall show elements than on the clothes. Also, the lighting, the labyrinthine scenery and extrovert posing and lip synching of the models was that much input that it took away attention from - what used to be- the actual core of the show: the collection.

All in all a successful publicity stunt that surely brought Lady Gaga, Nichola Formichetti and the label Mugler into many headlines. (One of the first headlines after the show being that Lady Gaga, already "bought" the entire collection ...surprised anybody?!)


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