9 September 2019

The Best Autumn/Winter ‘19 Campaigns

As the balmy summer days are slowly but surely tapering away and are replaced by crisp autumnal nights, so too must our wardrobes transition. As effortless as it is to slip on a skirt or a pair of shorts, I'm quite excited to add some extra layers, update the wardrobes and ditch the muggy heat. With the AW19 collections hitting stores, it’s no crime to indulge in a few new pieces to weather the cold months. To make your selection a bit easier, I’ve gathered up some of my favourite AW19 campaigns.

posh meets punk in brutalist Berlin
I'm a little biased when it comes to this one. Whilst not too quick to forgive Hedi Slimane for his total upheaval of Phoebe Philo’s Céline (the accent now dropped), I am a fan of his new campaign set in Berlin. Featuring recognisable landmarks such as the Bierpinsel in Steiglitz, the brooding black and white photographs and accompanying video (shot by Slimane himself) are sleek, sophisticated and make Berlin seem sexy and glamorous. They made good use of the city’s harsh brutalist architecture and cavernous warehouses as backdrops, as well as shooting in SO36—the infamous punk nightclub frequented by Iggy Pop and David Bowie during his illustrious love affair with the city.

eckhaus latta
UGGs, but make them sexy
UGG’s have been having a renaissance lately. Ever since Y-Project managed to miraculously vamp up the wooly, bulbous, ugly boots, it seems like every fashion season they come out of the woodwork with a new collaboration. Their most recent is with arty and avant-garde Eckhaus Latta who have become a fixture in the New York art and fashion scenes. The AW19 campaign is a melancholic ode to the savage beauty of Mono County, California, which was also the inspiration for the collection. Models sport the square toed and high heeled rendition of the UGG against a backdrop of black sand dunes and salt lakes. Stripped of its traditional rounded front, there’s something sexy and cool about Eckhaus Latta’s boxy boot. Besides the shoes, UGG also collaborated with the design duo on several shearling and sheepskin pieces, also showcased in the campaign.

unapologetically queer, and definitely NSFW
For Alejandro Gómez Palomo’s most recent campaign, he called in the talents of Berlin-based photographer and filmmaker Matt Lambert heralded for his exploration of queer intimacy, having previously worked with gay dating app Grindr and Stefano Pilati’s Random Identity. This campaign is perfectly on brand for him. It’s a bacchanalian tableau of intertwined bodies, both clothed and unclothed, and a sultry celebration of both the garments and queer love. No stranger to risque marketing, Palomo’s AW18 campaign, lensed by Kito Muñoz, showed his models being touted about the streets of Madrid on leashes. Known for his unapologetic confrontation of gender stereotypes, Palomo continues to push the boundaries of the gender binary with each new collection, regularly sending his male models down the runway in dresses and corsets.

a lesson in love from fashion’s biggest trolls
In a departure from their meme-ish Instagram which is essentially a mockery of the mundane and a big middle finger to conventional fashion marketing, Balenciaga’s AW19 campaign is a genuine celebration of love, in all its shapes, colours and sizes. It seems Balenciaga can take itself seriously every once in a while. Photographed in the city of love by photographer Greg Finck, the campaign features real street cast Parisian couples locking lips and snuggling up on the streets of Paris decked out in pieces from the new collection. The casting is diverse, showing that love comes in different forms. The moving photographs are accompanied by a video which shows the couples discussing their relationships in a blank room on a CCTV camera. And, thankfully, not a pair of Triple-S is in sight.


Alessandro’s Michele’s tribute to prêt-à-porter
Is there a single bad thing to say about Gucci’s Alessandro Michele? I sure can’t think of any. Gucci’s AW19 campaign lensed by Glen Luchford is a boisterous and extravagant lesson in the history of prêt-à-porter, spanning from the ‘50s through to the ‘80s. We are taken on a journey through the stages of a garment’s life, from ideation, to the sewing room, to the fittings and runway, and then to the newsstands and culminating on the streets of Paris to be ogled by curious onlookers. The clothes themselves are decadent and resplendent, as to be expected of Michele’s Gucci. It’s refreshing to see a campaign that actually has a narrative with a tangible beginning, middle, and end. Alessandro is a true storyteller, both with the garments he creates and the campaigns he concocts. His other campaigns have been just as theatrical, with the SS19 campaign inspired by the glitz and glamour of old Hollywood, and the Pre-Fall 2019 campaign shot against the ruins of Pompeii. 

modern day cowboy meets mosh pit
Telfar Clemens of his eponymous label Telfar's designs have been genderless since the brand’s inception in 2005, well before it was the “hip” thing to do. His AW19 presentation turned Irving Plaza in NYC into a mosh pit, with models being lifted into the audience, readings by acclaimed playwright Jeremy O’Harris, and performances by British-Nigerian singer, Oyinda. Inspired by O’Harris’ Slave Play, the collection and campaign imagery are an exploration of American history and the concept of country. 

Country music, being quintessentially American, has strong ties to the South and is often thought of as a soundtrack for the more conservative minded. The imagery of a black woman dressed in a cowboy hat, riding boots, and a large buckled belt, the de facto “country” uniform, is, therefore, subversive in its own right. A tattered and distorted American flag is superimposed over a black model’s face, referencing the controversial form of political protest. Telfar is challenging the notion of American identity, unapologetically political, and just so damn cool. Buckle up buckaroos—Telfar is definitely one to watch out for this NYFW.