Anthony Vaccarello, the current creative director of Saint Laurent, is an avid student of the maison’s archive, drawing inspiration from both the familiar and lesser-known corners of Yves Saint Laurent’s peerless oeuvre. For his blockbuster Spring/Summer 2020 show, held against the backdrop of the Eiffel Tower and illuminated by columns of white light, Vaccarello took the house namesake’s most revolutionary designs – among them, the ‘Le Smoking’ tuxedo – and remade them for a new decade. The result was a heady cocktail of provocation and evening elegance as armour for the everyday – clothes that channel the spirit of the maison’s unmistakable provenance. For the S/S20 issue of AnOther Magazine, photographer Sarah Piantadosi and contributing fashion editor Karen Langley captured this collection, shown here alongside various quotes from Vaccarello, given backstage on the day of the show last September.
“Saint Laurent is as much about attitude as it is spectacle... I wanted to bring something heavier, like a heavy summer with heavy embroidery, heavy colours, heavy gold. I really wanted to give another aspect of summer. I really wanted to pay homage to Le Smoking and the tuxedo, to say, ‘This is the house of the tuxedo. If you need a tuxedo you have to come to Saint Laurent because otherwise it’s a fake tuxedo.’”
“Le Tour Eiffel for me is like Saint Laurent, it’s what you have in mind when you see Paris. It’s the best place in Paris, I cannot find another place better than here. I thought putting the light on the floor would be like a new version of chandeliers. Because, in [Yves Saint Laurent’s] Russian collection, it was glorious with all the chandeliers – but I wanted to do the chandeliers for nowadays, coming from the floor. It’s kind of like when you are drunk, seeing all the lights when your head is starting to move.”
Hair: Matt Mulhall at Streeters. Make-up: Lotten Holmqvist at Management Artists using Shiseido. Model: Akon Changkou at New Icon NY. Casting: Noah Shelley at Streeters. Set design: Andrew Tomlinson at Streeters. Digital tech: Lisa Bennett. Photographic assistants: Stefan Ebelewicz and Barney Curran. Production: Artistry. Special thanks to Jim’s Cafe, Clapton.
This story originally featured in AnOther Magazine Spring/Summer 2020, which is on sale internationally now.