Dark decor, nocturnal silhouettes, power dressing, welcome to the hedonistic and committed world of Egon Lab. Join us backstage just minutes before their Autumn-Winter 2024-2025 show kicks off at the Palais de Tokyo during Paris Fashion Week.
"Only Lovers Left Alive", Egon Lab's new collection, borrows the title from one of director Jim Jarmush's most iconic films. Here, however, there are no vampires or desolate lovers, just night owls reminiscent of the long, romantic figures of Tilda Swinton and Tom Hiddleston, anti-heroes in search of meaning wandering the world of the living. For their ninth collection, the Egon Lab duo formed by Florentin Glémarec and Kevin Nompeix denounce the contemporary obsession with bodies and their overexposure through the prism of normative, vampirizing beauty, accentuated by the age of the all-screen. A collection committed to the theme of mental health, where clothes are reflections of the soul. "It's a very personal exploration of my story", confides Kevin. "When I was a kid, I was overweight and suffered from this difference, then I fell into the opposite excess. But a lot of people reached out to me and allowed me to accept myself as I am. This collection is a manifesto on the power of the body to regenerate itself after trauma. The story of a rebirth."
In a permanent game of chiaroscuro, the duo chose the abysses of the Palais de Tokyo and the immensity of the venue for their Autumn-Winter 2024-2025 show, where grunge-accented silhouettes, plunged into darkness, are illuminated by powerful spotlights. "In the age of social networks, we want to show how the body has become a normative tool of representation, especially for younger generations, due to the pressure exerted by screens. We want to highlight the idea of filtering and over-filtering to which we subject our image, in order to have the feeling of belonging to this beauty", explains the duo. Like Jarmush's vampire-like creatures, Egon Lab is a nocturnal, magnetic label. Spearheading the new Parisian fashion scene and awarded the Prix Pierre Bergé by Andam in 2021, the duo has been exploring underground cultures and the imaginary of nightlife and partying since its inception three years ago. A quest for identity through the prism of clothing that has made them one of youth's most adored labels. With sensual tailoring, broad-shouldered blazers, asymmetrical draping, slimmer waists and gender fluidity, Egon Lab once again electrifies eveningwear this season, echoing contemporary power-dressing in a concert of leather, vinyl and fringe.
Thanks to their complementary skills - Florentin is more concerned with pattern-making and garment technique, and Kevin with branding and artistic direction - the duo has established itself in just a few years as one of the most promising labels on the Parisian scene. Yet Egon Lab is not just about clothes. It's a generational dialogue. The story of two young designers in touch with their times, aware of the power that a piece, a look, an allure can confer. This marque de société ("social brand"), as it likes to call itself, is a mouthpiece for the mores and ills of its generation. "We don't see ourselves as opinion leaders, but we're keen to raise issues that affect us, to open up debate and break taboos", says Kevin. "We truly conceive of clothing as a tool for inventing one's own identity, asserting oneself and expressing oneself freely."
For the finale of the Autumn-Winter 2024-2025 show, Egon Lab's Bright Young People stride forward in unison under the detonating soundtrack of its music director, Pablo Bozzi, like a resurgence of the hedonistic young aristocrats of the Roaring Twenties who thrilled England in the '20s. If this collection is the "poetic embodiment of pain" and the winding road to self-acceptance, it is also the reflection of a joyful band of enlightened creatives who, despite the shadows, despite the doubts, will always find the light.