Marcelo Burlon’s 10th anniversary show opened on a high note as 1998 dance hit “Free” by Ultra Naté boomed from the speakers.
“You’re free, to do what you want to do,” the American artist sang. Burlon has always obliged, following his own instinct, for good or bad.
More than perfecting his fashion lexicon rooted in street and club culture, techno folk inflections and elevated sportswear, Burlon’s biggest achievement is the community of friends, fans and customers he has built, catering to their needs of belonging via his snake and wing motif T-shirts.
This show, held at Velodromo Vigorelli, celebrated just that and cast 50 characters, including a few models and several friends of the brand.
“These 10 years bear my name but in fact they were made up by the people who supported me throughout,” Burlon said in a preview.
Fashion-wise, he homed in on his greatest hits, a simple yet thoughtful approach for this anniversary display, especially as he’s not shown IRL since pre-pandemic.
Streetwear references echoed in the California skater’s Bermuda shorts with ribbed tank tops and hooded parkas, the cotton overalls and paratrooper’s suits, not to mention the Robe di Kappa and Alpha Industries tie-ups which also read as elevated sportswear and military gear, respectively.
Patchwork shawl-collared sets (one wouldn’t call them suits, this being one of the luxury streetwear OGs) had a folk inflection and came with raw-hemmed panels or mixing checks, ikat and animal prints. The feather motifs which made him famous a decade ago framing T-shirt collars drifted onto deconstructed jackets and loose pants. Tie-dye motifs captured the hippy vibe of some earlier displays, while knitwear was just too cool to go unnoticed.
Towards the end of the show, the designer, clad in a blue leather workwear suit, walked his own show as if to say “this is where I belong, these are my people.”
To see this redux of Burlon’s trademarks come together so cohesively was a treat. Cue “The Rythm of the Night,” which got guests cheering and tapping their feet. Happy anniversary, County of Milan!