Sportmax AW16 – MFW

Max Mara’s little sister Sportmax mixes the exotic allure of Morocco and the austerity of the catholic spirit of the Northern Renaissance in a collection that appears both modern and minimalistic.


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Roomy sweaters saturated in decorative, wavy embroidery, patchwork leather coats, sleeve decorations that mimicked Persian rug patterns, long slouchy jumpers, dresses and macramé white knits were all reminiscent of a day spent wandering though the streets of Fez or a night in the fabled, shabby Tangier.

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In contrast with the Moroccan hues and patterns, there were slim waisted, thigh-fitting black and dark tan jackets with vertical zips, calf-length skirts and block-heeled shoes with a Céline-esque twist, which drew inspiration from Flemish Renaissance painting and its devoted and composed subjects.

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“Where does purity end and decoration begin?” asked Sportmax after the show with a post on their Instagram account. This collection answers – combining Puritan rigour with a fascination for Maghreb, displayed in a setting decorated with bold dark red, black and white towers made of industrial foam inspired by architectural elements that can be found in medieval paintings, Giotto’s in particular. The set-up was designed by Formafantasma, an Italian creative duo based in Amsterdam who partnered up with the Italian brand for the Spring/Summer 16 show as well.

Both a look to the past and the present, this collection gives a fresh touch to the design-led, urban style of the Emilian label.

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Words by Giorgia Baschirotto
Images © PYLOT Team using Impossible instant film.