PFW: Haider Ackermann, from Nina Simone to Aulnay-sous-Bois anger
Haider Ackermann will never be a political animal but like most great designers he is profoundly aware of the age in which he lives and all its anger.
Dressed in slim robes – all in black with just a line of gold that looked as if it was dripped on their outfits – it made for a poignant opening to a rigorously cut and styled show. On the soundtrack, Simone sang: “Freedom is no fear.”
Stylistically, his best trick was covering many looks in a spider's web pattern, frequently in gold, though once in black on an electric blue pant suit. Adding to the allure, his cast appeared with page-boy haircuts, their faces one quarter hidden by face nets that hung from one ear.
Ackermann is a masterful cutter, showing tunics and boleros with a glove like fit, though his hand is so subtle the clothes look at times almost organic. And he wowed with white marabou pants worn either under an oversized menswear or a massive 10-button military coat. Unlike his recent men’s eclectic dandy rocker debut collection for Berluti, which was a riot of color, this women’s show was almost entirely in black.
We missed Ackermann’s hyper original color palette with its burnished golds and fiery reds. However, the event was also a subtle change of gear for a designer whose tailoring skills increasingly match his famed draping techniques.
Caroline de Maigret, Clotilde Courau, Lou Doillon and Marisa Berenson attended – underlining Haider’s star quotient and standing among elegant cognoscenti. It-Guy Gabriel Day Lewis – son of Daniel and Isabelle Adjani – promised Haider an early copy of the EP he is currently recording.
“There is so much happening outside these doors. I was very hurt by reading about this black guy who was raped by police. By what is happening in America. And this was a message I wanted to connect. I am full of admiration for people who stand up for their rights. Nina Simone was one of the first human rights fighters so I just wanted to quietly honor these people, to be serene. Seeing those black women standing there was graceful and dignified,” said Ackermann, a Colombian-born, though Belgium-raised gentleman.
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