French designer Alphonse Maitrepierre honed his knack for cut and craft with the likes of Jean Paul Gaultier and Acne Studios. Now flying solo, it’s his tongue-in-cheek twists that catch the eye, be it a handbag shaped like a PlayStation controller or an elegantly attired alien. It felt logical that his muse of the season is the artist Ai-Da, a humanoid robot invented by British gallerist Aidan Meller who learned to paint thanks to machine learning.
The look: A history of couture meets Gen Z, taking shapes and exacting technical details from the former, on which the digitally generated prints, knack for splicing and general disregard for gender of the latter were overlaid.
Quote of note: “Ai-Da has the entire history of art into her algorithms, and I loved the vision that we, too, integrate the codes [of fashion] in the same way,” he said after the show.
Standout pieces: Seams curled around the leg transformed tailored trousers into altogether more exciting proposals; New Look-esque hourglass jackets with a hood; a cropped hybrid of a Spencer jacket and top; a host of oddly attractive items like a double-ended slipdress or stirrup leggings worn with opera-length gloves.
Takeaway: Blending well-executed 1950s couture with more of-the-moment ideals, particularly the gender-irrelevant approach, makes Maitrepierre’s work feel exciting. So did his sense of showmanship. Finnish French singer Prudence, formerly of buzzy group The Dø, closed the show in a voluminous feathered jacket, singing one of her solo debut tracks, to the delight of the audience.