"Stockman" breastplate, Martin Margiela

  • Martin Margiela

  • Label in virgin white cotton canvas held by 4 stitching points, inside hip middle front.
  • Ready-to-wear, spring-summer 1997, "Stockman" collection
  • Raw linen canvas printed with the references of a workshop mannequin. Bolducs in black cotton. Silver plated metal. Black cotton canvas.
  • GAL2020.2.27
  • Acquisition, Vogue Paris Foundation 2019 ; former Malika Larbi Ben Abdesselam collection
  • Palais Galliera, musée de la Mode de la Ville de Paris

The spring-summer 1997 collection is one of the most successful in Martin Margiela's career and one of the most striking proposals in the history of contemporary fashion. "Far from the visual exploits, he thus enters the heart of the matter in a concrete way, with dresses [...] which offer, in their non-fi nish aspect, a definition of the profession: the sense of lines, the work of the hand, and the secrets of a requirement, to the millimetre. Since his arrival in 1989, this is without doubt one of his most radical collections," comments Le Monde.

All the outfits are made from a single element: a hollowed-out Stockman model's bust worn as a rigid jacket or, as with this piece, as a bare-backed bib.

Like the antique mannequins, it is made of raw linen canvas, stencilled with its references: its size "42" on the throat, and a designation at the bottom, front and back: "Semi Couture, patented S.G.E., 35059".  Note that the inscription on a genuine Stockman bust is "S.G.D.G." and not "S.G.E.G.", for "Without Government Guarantee". This is a legal statement releasing the French State from any responsibility as to the actual functioning of a patented device. Established by a law in 1844, this mention disappeared in 1968.

Notice's author : Alexandre Samson