Xander Zhou AW19: fear, function and fashion cyborgs

The designer looks to a dystopian future.

Xander Zhou’s autumn / winter 2019 offering has been one of the most thoughtful collections so far. In many ways it was a show made for Instagram – clones, fashion cyborgs and Chewbacca-style models all stalked the runway. Which was entirely the point, a comment on the dangerous digitalisation of humanity.

The show notes offered some clues in the way of explaining the fantasy future-meets reality mood, exploring (and materialising) the evolution of man and fear of what the world is becoming.

The theatricality and prosthetics used on models from ‘alien’ eyes to bionic components, are both playful and fearfully unnerving. Much like today, in an era of all too real looking AI influencers taking over the gram.

The clothes were a beautiful paradox too  – modern men accessorising with flippers and furry feeding bottles to engineers donning 70s-esque polonecks. The collection overall has a hopeful message, one of belonging. Accepting the ‘other’ is the future.

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