Like the collection itself, the set of last week's Sportmax S/S 2016 show skilfully combined an easy, playful attitude with razor sharp lines and crisp precision.
The abstract mise-en-scène, designed by Amsterdam-based Italian designers Andrea Trimarchi and Simone Farresin of Formafantasma, used lengths of translucent smoke, yellow and peach-coloured PVC film to define the space. Stretching down from the ceiling and across the floor to form the catwalk, the sunshine-hued set brought a little warmth to the otherwise grey interior of Milan's Palazzo delle Poste – an early 20th century post office building designed by Luigi Broggi.
'We wanted the space to feel not like a scenography but more as a deconstructed architecture,' explain the designers. 'The PVC films are defining the catwalk and expanding in the space almost as an infinite loop. Our decision to use these materials is due to our will to have a 'Mediterranean' feel with the use of terracotta but contrasted with a more contemporary, synthetic material.'
While Gio Ponti's midcentury Villa Planchart in Caracas served as inspiration for the clean lines and hazy colour palette, the contrasting decorative brick wall from which the models emerged was a reference to the terracotta sun shades found in Italian summer houses from the 1960s and 1970s.
'Sportmax celebrates the reputation of the Italian manufacturing,' says Sportmax fashion director Grazia Malagoli of this season's direction, 'we want to embrace the Italian tradition incorporating historical elements within a modern context. We love to play with Italian drama and simplicity at the same time.'