The brand’s Spring/Summer 2022 show combines fashion with architecture, looking to the past to examine what’s to come

Saint Laurent took to Venice for its Spring ’22 Menswear show, crossing paths with the city’s beloved Architecture Biennale. Fittingly, the runway presentation was a communion between the two industries—each a medium of practical artistic expression. The fashion, even with its modern elements, communicated old world: ruffled blouses, floor-length capes, pointed-toe shoes, and cross necklaces. The architecture, on the other hand, looked resolutely towards the future: Anthony Vaccarello commissioned artist Doug Aitken for the design of an astonishing living artwork that would serve as the show’s venue.

Entitled Green Lens, the freestanding structure is all mirror and verdant greenery. It’s situated on the edge of Isola Della Certosa in the Venitian Lagoon. Kaleidoscopic views from the artwork’s interior render reality an abstraction; normative perspectives vanish, encouraging a new conception of the future which pays homage to the past.

Perfect dichotomy was the star of Vaccarello’s menswear show. The clothing’s romanticism required the setting’s futurism, and vice versa. Saint Laurent’s dark palette was reflected alongside the greens and blues of natural Venice—representative of the hope for a more balanced world. “It’s like a lighthouse, that one can journey to and have a very personal experience,” said Aitken of his creation. “A focal point that allows all of us to share our ideas and visions for the future.”

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