The Paris Haute Couture Fall 2022 Fashion Week has the ancient face of elitism
Words: Gianmarco Gronchi
Fashion is the queen of false promises. Proclamations of fairness, justice, and equal rights flourish from all sides. The winning rhetoric seems to be the one that generates the most engagement on social media. And fashion is great at exploiting successful trends. The problem is that fashion doesn’t love changing its identity. On the surface, everything changes, but in reality, everything stays the same. And Paris Haute Couture Week confirms this lying nature. Facing a prevailing vision that aims at conformity, Fashion claims for itself the luxury of exclusivity with Haute Couture. Paris proves that, beyond propagandistic use of key topics such as body positivity, gender equality, and inclusivity, fashion has the right to claim for itself an elitist approach to creation. Many will be astonished looking at the ultra-refined reinterpretation of the Roaring Twenties done by Giorgio Armani for Armani Privé or at the dreaminess of Daniel Roseberry, who has now made Schiaparelli’s identity codes his own and happily creates quoting Mugler, Gaultier, and Christian Lacroix. Demna Gvasalia has shown the world he’s much more than a streetwear-oversized-tracksuit designer with his second haute couture collection for Balenciaga. And his references come from the golden age of haute couture, looking back at Dior and Cristobal Balenciaga himself. There is nothing about democratic fashion here. The power of feminism is clear in the collection by Maria Grazia Chiuri for Dior, but the research on craftmanship aims for exclusivity. Haute Couture statement is clear: there is no space for moralism and victimhood. Fashion has come back to seduce us, to fascinate us, to guide us into an out-of-this-world oniric universe. The dream of fashion is shining, and we can dream with it.