Spanish luxury fashion house Balenciaga’s set at the Paris Fashion Week, underway from September 26, stunned the audience and internet users alike. The brand made its models walk through a pit filled with mud to exhibit its spring/summer 2023 collection. The likes of Kanye West (who now goes by Ye) and Bella Hadid were seen sporting Balenciaga ensembles on the sludgy runway.
When Kanye West opened for Balenciaga at the PFW this week, his face was covered with a baseball cap with a hood on top, a bulky military-style jacket worn over a black hoodie paired with leather trousers. The rapper’s stomp-like walk was not all that caught the attention of those in attendance. The Spanish brand’s unusual choice of making its model walk through a mud-caked runway also caught attention online. In videos and photos from the show, one can see the mud covering the clothes and boots of the rapper as they walk past.
The setup and show itself received mixed reviews. While some netizens proclaimed that they were convinced that Balenciaga’s show was a social experiment, others mentioned about how the mud would smell or feel like walking in. Yet there were some who thought the show was interesting, with its concepts serving as remnants of our time. “I think the Balenciaga fashion show was actually very interesting,” read a comment.
The House of Balenciaga is a social experiment ran by clinical psychologists to find out how far people are willing to go for brand affiliation. https://t.co/0SMhAaFPJJ— YT: Nomaswazi 11 (@Nomaswazi_11) October 3, 2022
i think the balenciaga fashion show was actually very interesting— seany *˳✧ (@mutanogenesis) October 4, 2022
Vogue reported that on the seat of every chair in the Balenciaga show, there was a note from the brand’s creative director, Demna Gvasalia. It declared that the show is “a metaphor for digging for the truth and being down to earth.”
Demna, in the show notes, had stated that he had “decided to no longer explain my collections and verbalise my designs, but to express a state of mind,” further adding that “fashion is a visual art and all we need is for it to be seen through someone’s eyes. You either like it or not.”