Loewe SS21 is a Portable Playground

A collection that rejects typical confines, in favor of circular abstractions.

Loewe certainly knows how to make a statement: the label consistently refuses the confines of ‘ready to wear’, instead choosing to revel amidst the avant garde. Just last month, it seemed every two Instagram posts featured Loewe’s “Is this ‘Woman’ the FILTHIEST PERSON ALIVE?” shirt—not quite the standard, high-end button-up one might be accustomed to. 

The brand is nonsensical at times, daring to break down any established precedents. Perhaps, that’s what makes the clothing all the more tailored to individual experience, less distanced from reality. It’s refreshing to see a label cover Divine—and even more refreshing to see proceeds go towards those left unaccounted for in the industry, and yet whose work allows it to function. 

In the current moment of isolation, Loewe once again remains grounded, acknowledging the dynamics of a pandemic as they become reified. The collection doesn’t only exist on some abstract runway; rather, it recreates the experience in a box delivered to your doorstep. As stated in a press release, the box is “a response to the singular times in which we are living, and essentially to the impossibility of holding a real fashion show.”

And still, the collection strays from another pedantic iteration of some ‘new abnormal’.  Instead, the objective is to create a transient, temporal space, one which emphasizes tactility at a time preoccupied with digital experience. The sensation of touching, of creating, is something which “translates into another format the peculiar language of the fashion show.” 

There’s lookbooks (in paper!), a perforated pop-up precollection, a texture palette, and even a record player—which does, indeed, spin a record. The clothing speaks for itself: creative director Johnathon Anderson produces pieces replete with askew buttoning, balloon sleeves, and drawstrings that dangle, each more whimsical than the next. It’s “Abstraction […] with utilitarianism, matte with shiny, ribbed with raffia. Jolliness is poised in flow.”

Loewe’s digital presence is just as intriguing: Loewe unveiled a new website and multiple interactive elements. There’s educative videos on Japanese textile techniques, the life of Paul Cadmus, and even insights into Loewe factories in Madrid. And, of course, there’s a video exploring the process of creating the menswear SS 21 show-in-a-box. Watch here.

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