I know it's been a while since the Maison Margiela fall 2015 ready to wear show happened at the beginning of March, but I didn't get a chance to really look at it and I just watched the show on YouTube and decided to revisit it.
It seems as though John Galliano is using Maison Margiela as a blank canvas or creative outlet of sorts for distributing his own design aesthetic. While I am a strong believer of consistency and character within a brand, I don't discredit Galliano for bringing his own flare to the company. A change in aesthetic can only be expected when strong designers are hired. And not strong as in stylish and full of potential. There are a lot of strong designers out there who could easily continue and grow the Maison Margiela legacy as it is. I mean strong as in genius, influential, and reputable. That last characteristic is the most important; John Galliano is known for a certain look and he can't be expected to drop that once he joins a new house. It's true that this show was very Galliano, from the makeup to the clothes and every odd character in between, but he's creating a new future and reputation for Margiela and he shouldn't have to drop his trademark design. It shouldn't be a surprise that any house John Galliano took over would look like, well, John Galliano took over.
On the subject of the actual clothes, this is what I imagine what it's like taking a dip into John's mind or seeing the world through his eyes. If this show was his vision of the world, it was made up of two different characters, but if this was his mind, then this show was two different sides of the same character, of the same mind. Whatever they may be, contrasting personalities or entirely different people, the looks are generally classified by their makeup; the simple, black swipe over their eyes being insanity and genius (somewhat) masked for everyday life, and the wild, bird of paradise eyed and Joker lipped models portraying pure madness out in the open. I interpreted this show in two ways; the first being that each individual look makes up Galliano's head as a whole (all insane, some parts less than others), and the second being John's outlook on the world expressed through the looks (All people are a little bit odd, some just hide it better than others. The big-lipped, wild-eyed have the purest amount of insanity. John sees all of these characters in the people he observes daily.) In every group of people who look "average" on the surface, there's a few weird ones who come scuttling by in the mix.
Because he's been in exile for so long, it only makes sense for his first couple collections for a new house to be classically Galliano to remind the world of his talent and taste before conforming a bit more to the character of the brand.
Photos via Style.com.