Paris (AFP)

It is in China that fashion has made its big comeback "as before": Louis Vuitton unveiled its men's collection on Thursday in front of an unmasked audience in the Shanghai docks, after leaving fashionistas hungry for more during virtual Fashion week in Paris in July.

Coming out of large red containers stamped LV, models first wore wise beige and black costumes before the festive and good-natured spirit took over the scene for this show lasting more than 30 minutes, two to three times longer than 'a classic parade.

After the cancellation of the parades this summer due to the health crisis, fashion has expressed itself with films, without convincing critics too much.

French rising star Jacquemus snubbed virtual Fashion week and put on a poetic parade in a wheat field near Paris with a few guests while Dior showcased its cruise collection in the central square of Lecce in southern Italy, with a grandiose staging ... but without an audience.

The Louis Vuitton fashion show was broadcast live from Shanghai on the French luxury house's social networks.

- "Great leap" -

In terms of outfits - bright colors, exaggerated cuts, fanciful hats, an abundance of patterns and cartoon characters encrusted on jackets or inflatable, hung on the back of the star model of the show, Kris Wu, ex-member of the K-pop boy band EXO .

In terms of atmosphere, gigantic characters on the containers and members of the LV team in blue overalls holding objects reminiscent of clouds or cotton candy.

These installations dialogued with the cloud motif, already seen in one of the previous collections of the artistic director of Louis Vuitton's men's collections, Virgil Abloh.

This is no coincidence: Louis Vuitton men's fashion will now be recycled and itinerant, the star designer announced in July in an interview with the online media WWD.

This show "is probably the biggest leap I have made to come to a new way of working," Virgil Abloh told WWD. “My shows are now going to travel the world” and there will be “a little bit of new stuff and things that you have seen before”.

This first post-Covid collection from the American jack-of-all-trades, one of the most creative designers of the moment, was expected - in vain - in Paris on July 10 as part of the week of ready-to-wear -wearing man.

- "Black imagination" -

Its digital presentation was reduced to a short film starting in Asnières, near Paris, in the family home of Louis Vuitton: porters in LV overalls loaded containers onto a barge and set off on a trip, with Shanghai as their first stopover. .

The universe of this video entitled "A bottle in the sea" was populated by animated figurines called "Zoooom and his friends" who embarked on the boat, in a nod to the videoconferences which were at the heart of the entire creation work. throughout the confinement.

Recycling is the common thread of this collection which even includes pieces from previous collections. Unheard of for a luxury home.

"We are in a new era" after the pandemic which brought "brutally to a halt" the world before, underlines Virgil Abloh, explaining that rather than giving in to "panic", he decided to seek a new path for fashion.

This parade was an opportunity for Abloh, one of the few black designers to run a major fashion house, to pay tribute to black creativity.

"This is not a new musical performance or one more parade, it is the black imagination that manifests itself in real life," he said in a video released at the end of the parade, announcing having donates to a foundation that supports "black people owned businesses" affected by the pandemic.

© 2020 AFP