Marko Mitanovski the Serbian designer has been based in London, a city once at the forefront of amorously eerie culture. Since graduating from the College of Design Belgrade in 2009, he has since lashed out against conventional styling and opted for an infusion of old-age flamboyance with other-worldy translucency. Five years ago he was chosen as one of four designers from all over the world to present his debut collection; Lady Macbeth at the ‘Ones to Watch’ show during London Fashion Week, his collection captured the imagination and attention of leading international publications, which gained him features on some world renowned sites. With Marko having studied literature before studying fashion, his work is a mixture of classic and modern culture; sculptural, and theatrical complex. Technically detailed construction and precise geometry set against the freedom and energy of creating characters and narrative.
Marko Mitanovski is undoubtedly a strong favourite at London’s home of quirky fashion – Fashion Scout in the Freemasons Hall. What he delivers is narrative art, with each season progressively different from the last. The colour palette being the only thing that remains consistent. Marko has a passion for the colour black, he describes it as being his favourite colour, Marko feels that black allows you to play with different textures and forms. With black being such a dark colour he adds jewellery to make it more glamourous and not so dark. This season Marko tried to externalise his inner emotions and communicate with the audience through his pieces, with a hope that the audience would be able to relate. Fashion is art and Marko relentlessly proves this. His collection looks outside of the scope of marketability, with a jiving of natural, architectural and historical aesthetics.
Marko’s Spring/Summer 2016 collection is inspired by the amorphous forms found in nature, and contemplates the phenomena of pain, rage and fear. Which was translated impeccably with the rock-like surfaces of some of the pieces, with their uneven shape giving the appearance of stalactite growths. Using faces bursting out of the pieces to capture the different emotions, symbolically he wanted to portray the freeing of letting go. Focusing on the visualization of cathartic pain release, expressionist artist Munch’s ‘The Scream’ and Hitchcock’s ‘The Birds’ and ‘Psycho’, helped build the collections dramatic and organic form and texture, which is dominated by leather and latex. Marko collaborated with four remarkable sculptors this season, Sonja Gajic, Ivan Stevanovic, Miki Lakobrija and Milan Stosic who contributed to the illustration of abstract shapes and figuration of emotions, throughout the collection. Distinct and striking jewellery and headpieces was created by the talented jeweller of the brand De Mode.
The all black palette is a perfect contrast against a completely white background and aids the dark presence, shimmers of silver and reflective beading was apparent too, but not distracting from the predominately black pieces. The model's hollowed gaze posed a melancholic emptiness to the obviously packed room. Grudgingly creeping across the runway to Bjork’s “Army of Me”, everyone was silently in awe over what trolled in above them, the achingly slow movements of the models only twisted the already intense mood of the room. Organic material was replicated using leather and latex, to create corseted short dresses which were paired with black bandages wrapped around the lengths of the models legs, cape like sleeves, heavily beaded detailed head pieces adorned the models heads, and in some cases the models faces were covered with dull jewelled masks, shoes were provided by Lilu, muted nude make up by Issidora and her team, and slicked back hair by Nina Budden to accommodate the headwear was all effluent through this show. Stylist and Art Director Claudia Behnke helped in enveloping the models into pain stricken muses.
This season of all that I witnessed, I can safely say as always, this show felt like something worthy of Fashion Scout, Marko never disappoints. He manages to build up a silent hysteria, and has us hanging on the edge of our white wooden bench, in anticipation to see what he has in store for us. He creates sheer art in a tangible visualisation of beautiful horror.
Written by Li Thane-Kitson
Interview by Shanika Ocean