Demna Gvasalia presented a star studded line-up dressed in matte black rubber looks, face shields, and larger-than-life gowns
For the brand’s 51st Haute Couture collection, Balenciaga explored the world of futurism by showcasing models wearing Gazar-inspired (a sculptural silk which Cristobal Balenciaga invented with the fabric manufacturer Abrahams in 1958) neoprene looks and face-shields. In the second half of the show, the star-studded lineup – featuring Kim Kardashian, Nicole Kidman and Naomi Campbell, to name a few – wore vast crinolines and slinky, draped, train-trailing float down the runway.
However, the most surprising guests on the runway were Scandi.
The show’s music was played on individual speakers held by runway models as they walked, part of a collaboration with Danish audio brand Bang & Olufsen. The Speaker Bags swung alongside the black second-skin scuba looks and moulded fabrics, filling the function of both purse and state-of-the-art portable sound system. A marvel of craftsmanship, the 20-pieces available for retail were milled from a block of solid aluminium before being pearl-blasted, anodised and hand-polished over several days.
Over a quarter of the collection was made with upcycled items, and eagle-eyed onlookers would spot the signature H/H logo of outerwear brand Helly Hansen among the looks. It isn’t the first time Gvasalia has been inspired by the Norwegian brand, previously using its iconic padded coats – filtered through the Balenciaga lens, of course – as a reference point for his 2016 ready-to-wear collection.
Below, explore all of the 59 looks and see if you can spot the Danish elements in Demna’s designs.
Balenciaga 51st couture autumn 22