Status? | S/S 98
International Herald Tribune - Suzy Menkes 30 September 1997
With a rasp of cotton wadding, the dress was torn open and out from the model's latex-encased body flew a cloud of bugs. Shock! Horror! Make that "Sensation" the name of the Brit/Art show currently packing them in at the Royal Academy, where Damien Hirst's bugs circle a decaying cow's head.
The bug dress was shown in a buzzy London fashion week, in which the cutting-edge designers mirror avant-garde art in their obsession with sex, death, leather, rubber, metal and publicity.
But the real sensation of London fashion week was not how shocking designers could be but how fast and far the event has grown since the city was the lame duck of fashion capitals in the early 1990s.
In general, London designers have spent too much time and energy on sheer and asymmetric clothes, reiterating what no one out there is wearing.
Saint Martin's graduate Andrew Groves (he of the bug dress) traced a sharp-shouldered silhouette.