See the full Martine Rose Spring/Summer 2020 Campaign
When she chooses her moment to speak, people flock to hear what Martine Rose has to say. This time, her choice of location was loaded with sarcasm—an astro-turfed roof garden at the top of a corporate building in the City of London, which she invaded with an oddball stream of be-wigged characters wearing clothes she’d revived from memories of club culture in the ’80s.
Like Charles Jeffrey’s Loverboy show, it was a defiant—and even more angry—response to the political mess Britain is in, with no resolution to Brexit in sight and trust in politicians at an all time low. The viewing was a very different experience from the welcoming warmth of the local neighborhood street party Rose held this time last year; deliberately so.
She was wearing a T-shirt featuring the slogan Promising Britain with a cartoon of a clown surrounded by European Union flag stars when she came out to explain her collection—a blunt satirical indictment of what’s been going on in the Houses of Parliament for months and months. “It’s laughable but terrifying at the same time,” she said.
“They are clowns, politicians. And I chose to come here to this venue as a comment on business leaving Britain. And that’s why you’ll see cuts here that are inside out and back to front. It’s all confused, like what’s going on right here and internationally, too. Playful, but sinister, I’d say.”
Fashion-wise she made a strong case for tailored flares and chinos with cargo pockets, three-quarter drape jackets, and concertina-pressed shirts.
There were off-proportions gathered from ravers, skinheads, rastas, and disco-goers of yesteryear, cultural notes remade for a young generation to arm itself against disunity. The last word on her press release, in capitals was coexist.
Rose shook her head in conclusion. “You know, I’m not normally a pessimistic person. I’m an optimist. I think, in the end, whatever happens, there are always people. I believe in our relationships. And that’s why I put in my badge ‘Magic Things Ahead.’ ”