MCM: Robots in Space

The MCM Roboter Clutch makes a triumphant return to its natural habitat – the intergalactic universe – in this witty and chic short by Clementine Keith Roach

With a storied career that includes assisting Shona Heath, shooting with Tim Walker and being determined one of Selfridges' Bright Young Things, London-based set designer Clementine Keith Roach is renowned for her precise and distinctly evocative work. Here, inspired by the galactic aesthetic of MCM's new collection, she has evolved into a director for a playful short created exclusively for Her creation takes us through a Blue Peter-style step-by-step of set design where "jewels became stars, studs a lunar surface, luminous pearls far off planets. These made up an abstract, cosmic world for the shining burgundy robot to land in." Set to a nostalgic soundtrack evocative of seventies childrens television, interspursed with Sun Ra interstellar blasts and rumbles, the resulting clip is humourous yet elegant: transforming MCM's Roboter Clutch into the ultimate object of desire. 

"I looked at still life photographers from the 60s and 70s" explains Roach of her references, "arrangements of autonomous objects sculpted by light and saturated colour. I wanted each object to be celebrated individually for its specific texture, whether metallic sheen or matte softness, but also able to be viewed as an entire scene; to come together as a strange landscape." Gathering a mix of quotidian products with a materiality that inspired her – from iridescent nail varnishes and frilly scrunchies to false eyelashes – Roach refined her props down to a chic selection of Himalayan pink rock salt, natural sponges and Radox bath bubbles. "I wanted the piece to look like a moving abstract painting," she says "forms gliding, swinging, pushed into place – but only when the Roboter makes its moon landing do they synthesize into a celestial setting."