The legendary menswear tradeshow Pitti Immagine Uomo yesterday showcased an anthology of era-defining Belgium designer Ann Demeulemeester, inviting her as a guest of honor for their 102nd Edition. Whilst the sun beat down outside on the streets of Florence, Demeulemeester's coolness amongst the heat was a welcome discovery for the senses.

Attendees were invited to a converted train station to witness the history of one of Belgium's most celebrated exports. The grandiose and industrial feel of the Stazione Leopolda in Florence would drown most collections. But Demeulemeester's parade of iconic looks from her illustrious back catalog confronts the building's coldness with a steely embrace. Artists such as Suicide, Sonic Youth, The Velvet Underground, Massive Attack, and Pattie Smith were all part of the soundtrack to the exhibition that filled the rafters of the hall with their eerie tones. As you browsed the exhibition it led one to imagine a shade donning Alan Vega or Lou Reed performing in full Demeulemeester get-up in a sweaty Warhol private party or CBGB in its pomp.

Whilst rooted in the soundtrack of another era each look in the exhibition feels as timelessly contemporary as the music that accompanies it. Like Kate Bush's 'Running up that Hill' every item preys to be rediscovered by a new generation. Certainly, the dark, post-punk feel of Demeulemeester's work fits the mood of 2022, these are clothes for the counter-culture and those with DIY sensibilities movements grounded in the '60s and '70s. Unpredictably these sensibilities have taken hold in Tiktok too, priming a new set of cultural adventurers to re-create the subcultural movements of yesteryear. Pray more can discover the joy of Demeulemeester and her fashion rebellion.

Scroll through the gallery to see some of our highlights and head over to Pitti Immagine Uomo's instagram and Pitti Connect for more coverage of the Ann Demeulemeester show and more from the fair.


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