Coperni AW23 – Paris Fashion Week
Jodi Bhachu-Smith looks back and the new collection from Sébastien Meyer and Arnaud Vaillant at PFW
In fashion’s highly competitive world, a brand’s success can hinge on a viral moment. So, after the triumph of Bella Hadid’s spray-on dress last season, founders Sébastien Meyer and Arnaud Vaillant aimed even higher for their Coperni AW23 show at Paris Fashion Week. The new collection sought to continue their exploration of the relationship between fashion and technology, envisioned through author Jean de La Fontaine’s fable, The Wolf and the Lamb.
For the unfamiliar, the moral of the fable highlights the value of reason over power and explores the detrimental effects of the abuse of authority in society. However, for Meyer and Vaillant, who wove elements of the parable throughout their designs, the story represented the complex relationship between humans and technology.
In Coperni’s translation, each model represented the lambs, while five Boston Dynamics robot dogs (whose roles would become clear as the show unfolded) played the wolves. The story skilfully incorporated direct interpretations of Fontaine’s work, in bold AI-generated imagery, hand-painted jackets and artistically printed shirts.
Simple leather dresses with torn hems paired with blood-red tights perhaps hinted at one’s fate on encountering a wolf. Delving further into the motif, Little Red Riding Hood’s cape was reimagined in contemporary styles and textures to ground us in the now while transporting us back to our times of careless adolescence.
The colour palette followed the cues of the gothic tales on display. Black was broken up with injections of sparkline silver, ripped blue jeans and hypnotic browns. Through the accessories, Meyer and Vaillant maintained their youthful and humorous appeal by incorporating pieces like the iconic Swipe bag, rubber boots, emoji-inspired brooches and detailing.
The show ended in seamlessly choreography, with one of the ever-present robo-dogs removing Rianne Van Rompaey’s wrap to reveal an asymmetric slip dress. The reveal visualised the Coperni AW23 interpretation of the moral from The Wolf and the Lamb – the collaboration between human and machine, rather than locked in a battle for power.
To read our review of the Vivienne Westwood show from PFW, click here
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