PARIS, France — There has always been something dystopian, tribal and futuristic to the world of Marine Serre. The film Dune invariably comes to mind; a few cyberpunk collections from Jean-Paul Gaultier, circa 1995, too. Serre’s shows in the past have brought guests to rainy wastelands, creepy looking industrial spaces and underground venues filled with carpets and neon lights. The short film she unveiled this season in lieu of the show, entitled Amor Fati and directed by Sacha Barbin and Ryan Doubiago, was a natural progression for the designer. It felt true to her past rather than a choice forced by this very strange moment, even though, probably, it was.
Amor Fati was a captivating piece of filmmaking, dealing with themes that are central to Serre’s sensibility: tribalism and belonging; the fury of the elements; traveling and transformation. The main characters seamlessly mutate, following a circular narrative. All the while, pieces of clothing underscored each passage of the film, coming across as costumes but not quite. In this sense, the mirroring of filmic medium and fashion message was perfect.
The collection, truth be told, did not mark a decisive step forward for Serre. Rather, it was an act of consolidation, heavy on tailoring and bodysuits in biodegradable nylon and recycled moiré. Repurposed tailoring fabrics were given a second life in mannish pieces, while regenerated carpets appeared throughout. Environmental responsibility is pivotal to Serre’s work: her progressive aesthetic grows on a foundation of eco-conscious savoir faire. This was a highly enjoyable outing, all things considered, even though the Gaultier references seemed at times a bit too literal. Taking inspiration from that stellar moment in fashion is fine, of course. It’s not about where you take things from, but where you take them to.