Fashion

How The Gaze Shaped JW Anderson’s Spring 2020 Collection

Using suggestive embellishment and cape-like silhouettes, Jonathan Anderson reimagined the power of the gaze.
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Photo via JW Anderson

When it comes to fashion in its most elementary – fabrics, shapes, and colors – beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Designer Jonathan Anderson took this saying literally in his Spring 2020 collection for eponymous brand JW Anderson, creating a set of 41 looks specifically designed to be viewed, perceived, and understood. “I thought about this idea of ‘looking’ at things and how we perceive them, how we look at textures, how we see jewelry, and what jewelry really is,” said Anderson after the show. “I was looking at old magazine covers and the objects were more theatrical in a sense.”

 

At London Fashion Week on Monday, the collection captivated audience members' gaze with cape-like trenches and reimaginations of classic JW Anderson pieces, like the brand’s Keyts family of bags. The visually stimulating collection attracted elite guests including Billy Porter, Maisie Williams, and Christina Aguilera, who sat front row for the event. Dresses ranged from pastel knits to asymmetrical florals, setting the perfect tone for those who want to skip past fall and head straight back to the beach. Most notable was a beaded, bra-like piece that sat overtop of several items in the collection, drawing the eye to the chest and specific elements of the look.

 

Inspired by Liz Magor’s work at Harvard, Anderson highlighted the Canadian artist's interpretation of how we look at visual stimuli. Magor’s pieces are sculpture, showcasing everyday items in clear, plastic-wrapped boxes, therefore changing the way the viewer must look at and interpret what is inside. Anderson applied the concept to his collection, designing pieces as metaphorical as they are beautiful. Magor’s pieces sat around London's Leomanry House for the show, as a reminder of and commentary on the collection’s most crucial element – the eye.

 

See images from the collection below.

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