Fashion lovers, do we have the 12-minute movie for you
Tribeca Film Festival is in full-swing in New York, and there are ENDLESS movies to get excited about. One in particular will have fashion fans not only swooning, but totally enthralled. The Artist is Absent is a short documentary, directed by Alison Chernick, about iconic designer Martin Margiela. There’s just one catch: You never actually see Margiela. Quite honestly, not many people in the fashion world could even pick him out of a lineup.
Margiela worked with Jean Paul Gaultier for five years before starting his own label in 1989. Since then, he’s been a titan of haute couture. His work is all about deconstruction, redesigning found objects like wigs, and pushing envelopes. As Gaultier says in the trailer for the film, “He’s not influenced by the physical [world], but more by the spirit . . . As a creator, as a designer he’s a genius.”
But what sets Margiela apart from other haute couture icons is that he keeps a low profile. He values his anonymity, which encourages people to judge him based on his work rather than himself. Anonymity is an element you see in his work as well, with many of his models wearing intricate face coverings. You won’t find a slew of interviews or pictures of him walking the runway with his models — Margiela could walk by you on the street and you’d likely never know it. In fact, he doesn’t actually appear in the documentary at all, instead letting friends and colleagues narrate his career. It’s sort of the fashion equivalent of Sia.
Also, his looks are 100% unique and the face covering tactic actually works (in a kind of spooky way) to keep the emphasis on the clothes and off the models. Here are some looks we love:
Speaking of Sia:
Sometimes the masks are so gorgeous we wish we could wear them in our everyday lives: