“I have been fascinated by the great British sculptor Henry Moore for as long as I can remember — his work has always had a powerful influence on me,” said Chief Creative and Chief Executive Officer Christopher Bailey, who re-imagined the renowned artist’s work and personal style for Burberry’s February Collection, through form, texture and crafted detail.
Presented at Makers House in London, the sophomore straight-to-consumer show featured models in sculptural, asymmetric pieces walking along Moore’s bronze sculptures placed on the runway. A 78-look collection punctuated with punchy prints, it takes references from the Henry Moore Foundation archives, which marks its 40th anniversary this year.
Even the shoes — mid-calf boots with an angular cut-out heel for women, and leather brogues with an asymmetric closure for men — speak of Moore’s influence.
“Henry Moore’s art has always loomed large in my imagination: These great, iconic figures in the British landscape, elemental sculptures that manage also to be human, soft, approachable. I’ve always found them very moving, I think perhaps because they manage to be so monumental and yet so personal, so public and yet so private at the same time,” revealed Bailey. “Looking at — and thinking about — his work set up a series of conversations as we were working on this collection; discussions about scale, proportion, texture, patina and shape. We looked at the contradictions in Moore’s work, between power and gentleness, heaviness and lightness, familiarity and abstraction. Between the hardness of his materials and the fluidity and softness of his forms. And we thought about the way in which he makes objects that combine beauty with oddness, the recognisable with the strange.”
Like the previous season’s Bridle bag, you’ll also discover that the new key bag is unisex in design. Named after the house code for Burberry’s signature honey-coloured gabardine, the DK88 recasts classic styles in Burberry’s new Trench Leather, set to be launched in May.
The show concluded with an extraordinary collection of 78 limited edition couture capes, with each individually named and made using remarkable construction techniques and available for special order. A wow-inducing expression of the scale and form of Moore’s elemental sculptures, the distinct toppers will also embark on a world tour starting from Makers House.
“At Burberry we are always fascinated by the making process, where it is hidden and where it is revealed. The images of Moore in his studio — the stripes of his apron, the tools of his trade, the artist at work — ended up feeding into the collection itself. It is our privilege, with thanks to the great kindness of the Henry Moore Foundation, to be able to present our collection alongside the work that inspired it.”
As always, music played a role in the Burberry experience. This time, Mercury Prize-nominated British singer-songwriter Anna Calvi serenaded guests from a balcony overlooking the runway, accompanied by her band as well as members of the Heritage Orchestra & Choir.