In this era of social media, celebrity culture and rampant collaborations, it is hard to imagine that there once existed a fashion designer like Martin Margiela who famously avoided the spotlight. The Belgian born designer, who made his debut in 1988, never once took a bow at the end of his shows, posed for official photographs, or sat down for an interview.
During his time at his eponymous label, he is notorious for responding to interviews via fax machines. Despite his rejection of publicity, that has never stopped him from revolutionising the fashion landscape as we know it. Some of the most influential designers of this era–Demna Gvasalia, Raf Simons, Marc Jacobs and Virgil Abloh all count Margiela's subversive demonstration of the traditional idea of fashion as a massive source of inspiration.
In the year where nothing seems to be going right, it seems incredible that we would be receiving this gift of a Margiela appearance. Titled Martin Margiela: In His Own Words, the fashion iconoclast brings us on a deep dive into his journey in the fashion world, from beginning till the present, and gives us an insight into his illustrious creations, and his decision to remain anonymous.
Directed by Reiner Holzemer who also made Dries, the Dries Van Noten documentary, in 2017, Holzemeer gets Margiela to open up in a way that would be unfathomable before, from discussing his childhood to the idea of continuing his legacy. While he never reveals his face throughout the documentary, Holzemeer films Margiela recreating some of his most iconic pieces.
The documentary also features insights from Margiela's mentor, Jean Paul Gaultier, as well as fashion industry heavyweights like Carine Roitfeld, as well as fashion critic Cathy Horyn and fashion historian Olivier Saillard. The best part of the equation, with most big-budget Hollywood films being pushed back to 2021 due to COVID-19, Martin Margiela: In His Own Words will be released on demand on the 10th of April.
Martin Margiela: In His Own Words will be available on the 10th of April, 2020 via this dedicated site.