Step into the house: Loewe Autumn-Winter 2024 by Jonathan W. Anderson

For autumn-winter 2024, Jonathan W. Anderson pays homage to Albert York’s works, turning the showspace into a typical British house and celebrating the present moment of being alive.

Loewe is a leather power house, so the collection included some show-stopper draped nappa blousons, a fluffy fur hoodie and leather aviator jackets. The collection featured a revised version of the best-seller Squeeze bag. Playful and bold, the cult accessory got an artsy makeover, embellished with heavenly birds or a dog, embroidered in micro-beads.

Jonathan W. Anderson loves to play with the notion of gender, thus an abundance of extra-long smoking jackets or tail-coats, lousy pants and pajamas. Backstage he noted that Prince Harry was one of his sources of inspiration, and how he had to always dress up for his boarding school classes. No one wears similar looks, anyways, apart from the members of the royal family, so it was a challenge to make it work in a new fashion context. Well, mischief managed, the pieces looked irresistibly Loewe.

Everybody knows that Jonathan W. Anderson has a passion for arts. So it was only natural for him to transform his showspace on the Esplanade Saint Louis, in the courtyard of the Château de Vincennes, into an improvised art gallery of Albert York’s eighteen small but intense oil paintings. The American painter was known for his modestly sized depictions of idyllic landscapes and floral still lifes (Jackie Kennedy Onnasis was one of his biggest fans), and, ironically, it’s his first and the most extensive show in Continental Europe. Anderson also quoted the renowned artist in his show notes, who once famously said: “We live in a paradise. This is the Garden of Eden. Really. It is. It might be the only paradise we’ll ever know”. So, we should celebrate life as long as we have the privilege of being alive, and clothing should help us enjoy the presence, the being in the moment.

As if an invitation to visit a private house, the show had many typical home references.  Flower and vegetable tapestries from the classical British drawing room became patterns on the gowns, shirts or trousers. The beloved dog made its appearance in a mosaic pattern on a sculptural A-line short dress (the small intricate beads were meant to replicate the caviar, the favorite appetizer of the rich). There were also some powerful visual illusions: dresses with patterns mimicking ostrich leather that almost looked like real exotic skin. Other trompe l’oeil included tartans: the checks literally melt in mille-feuilles sliced chiffon, gaining further 3D materiality, and coat collars were adorned with what looked like fur, but were actually wood carvings. While big buckles, usually functional, served as an eye-catching decoration on evening gowns with sensual cuts, and tops in suede. More than a simple accessory, but a work of art.