Jil Sander’s A/W 2020 show is set inside a refurbished thermo-electric station

Jil Sander’s A/W 2020 show is set inside a refurbished thermo-electric station

Industrially inclined for autumn, the Meiers chose a recently refurbished former thermo-electric station, filled with mismatched vintage chairs

Architecturally-minded Lucie and Luke Meier have an affinity for extravagantly sized spaces. For the duo’s debut S/S 2018 show as creative directors of Jil Sander, they showcased their summer vision outdoors in a yet-to-open shopping centre in a Zaha Hadid-designed residential tower. Last season, their atmospheric S/S 2020 offering was shown inside an open-air courtyard at Pinacoteca di Brera, a baroque arch-lined art gallery and cultural institution in Milan, against a ten tonne installation of gravel, formed from mounds of stone.

Industrially inclined for autumn, the Meiers chose a recently refurbished former thermo-electric station on Via Bramante in Milan for their A/W 2020 show location. It once belonged to the State Electricity Company, and Sander is the first brand to hold a fashion show there. ‘We love the space because it’s a work in progress,’ they explain. ‘We’re here for a fleeting moment and we like the temporary essence.’ The concrete and steel-clad space will soon become the exhibition site of ADI, the Associazione per il Design Industriale.

The duo were also attracted to the venue for its expanse. ‘The volume of the space is the most important connection as we are able to accentuate the movement of the clothes,’ they say of the serendipity between venue and collection, which featured A-shaped coats, dresses in floating silk jacquard and taffeta with voluminous pleated sleeves and a handmade cape made of gauzy silk and viscose fringes.

In a final theatrical flourish, the space was populated with mismatched vintage chairs sourced in France and Italy. As each of the models strode down the catwalk they settled on one of the wooden seating options which lined the centre of the runway. The show may have been a transient moment and it’s venue in a state of flux, but the clothes that featured on the catwalk will last a lifetime. §

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