The Best Fashion Show Sets Of All Time

Is it because of or in spite of their ephemerality that fashion show sets have such a hold on us? Either way, these elaborate stages, which are part art installation, part time travel and teleportation device, are capable of transforming a simple catwalk into an extravagant event, transporting showgoers through space and time – and occasionally into otherworldly settings – through clever, and often elaborate, builds, and the smoke and mirrors that lighting and an outstanding playlist bring. Consider any of Chanel’s blockbuster sets (the rocket from autumn/winter 2017, the airport terminal from spring/summer 2016, the supermarket from autumn/winter 2014), or Louis Vuitton’s magical settings (autumn/winter 2012’s romantic train journey, or the playful all-white carousel from spring/summer 2012). Beyond mere stages, these sets are immersive experiences, as compelling as they are functional – and, now, insta-friendly too. From makeshift mirrored caves (Dior’s spring/summer 2018) to ghostly apparitions in the shape of Kate Moss (Alexander McQueen’s autumn/winter 2006), Vogue looks back at some of the best fashion show sets of recent times.

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    At Alexander McQueen’s autumn/winter 2006 presentation, a hologram in the shape of Kate Moss closed the show. It was a piece created by the video artist Baillie Walsh and art directed by McQueen himself.

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    John Galliano’s extravagant autumn/winter 2008 show set featured a Buddha garden and Orientalist details.

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    Propellers spun in the background of Hermès’s aviation-themed autumn/winter 2009 show.

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    Marc Jacobs erected a carousel in Louvre’s Cour Carrée for Louis Vuitton’s spring/summer 2012 show.

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    The elaborate paper set for Marc Jacobs’s autumn/winter 2012 show was designed by the artist Rachel Feinstein.

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    10 coffins lined Thom Browne’s show set for autumn/winter 2012.

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    For Louis Vuitton’s autumn/winter 2012 show, Marc Jacobs created an old-fashioned train car.

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    The artist Daniel Buren collaborated with Marc Jacobs to create the set for Louis Vuitton’s spring/summer 2013 show, which featured four escalators emptying out onto a giant yellow and white checked runway.

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