Erdem’s Pre-Fall 2024 collection is a fascinating exploration of the dichotomy between public perception and private vulnerability, inspired by the iconic opera singer Maria Callas. This season, Erdem delves into the nuances of Callas’ complex persona, creating a wardrobe that resonates with her unique blend of emotional depth and theatrical flair.
The collection is a study in contrasts, blending control with passion, restraint with ferocity, and image with expression. It pays homage to Callas’s dual nature – the powerful, electric presence on stage and her more vulnerable, exposed self offstage. Erdem’s designs draw on this tension, presenting pieces that are both structured and fluid, tailored yet organic.
Erdem’s artistic direction this season is particularly influenced by the silhouettes of the late 1950s and 1960s. Think cocoon shapes, boat-neck dresses and felted pea coats with a twist of voluminous backs. These designs embody a decadent edge that reflects the unforgettable voice of Callas, which critics have often praised. The collection’s palette and play of textures evoke a sense of rich, understated glamour.
A notable theme in Erdem’s Pre-Fall 2024 collection is the interplay of austerity and playfulness. A black dress with an oversized fuchsia bow, monastic dresses with jeweled shoulders, and cloqué dresses with exaggerated bows embody this contrast. This struggle between the austere and the whimsical reflects the complexity of Callas’ public and private persona.
Floral motifs, especially roses, are a recurring element throughout the collection, symbolizing worship and passion. These motifs appear in a variety of forms – from blurred prints on silk gowns that evoke a sense of movement, to hand-dyed appliqué roses that cover an entire gown. The use of flowers adds a layer of depth and narrative to the collection, reinforcing the theme of public adulation versus private introspection.
Erdem’s collection also pays tribute to couturier Madame Biki, Puccini’s granddaughter, who once dressed Callas. This historical connection adds an extra layer of richness and authenticity to the designs, bridging past and present in a seamless fashion narrative.
©Photo: Erdem / Sonia Szóstak