What Makes a Man? Here, Let’s Ask a Fashion Video

Men (and non-men) in Bottega Veneta’s new men’s wear video, including (clockwise from top left) the rapper Octavian, singer Neneh Cherry, musician Tricky, and dancer Roberto Bolle.
Photo: Courtesy of Bottega Veneta

When it’s hard to remember what week it is, it’s doubly hard to pin down what fashion week it is. Or when. Or, honestly, why. As the fashion industry has worked to face the challenges of the COVID-19 era, fashion week as we knew it was one of the first sacred cows to be sacrificed: February’s European shows made it to the finish line, even as editors flew home en masse, but the summer menswear weeks were canceled, and plans for September are still being debated. (There will be some presentations, organized by the major fashion capitals, but participants and attendance are still TBD.)

Still, the last few weeks have been a lesson in the dogged perseverance of the largest brands. Suddenly, shows that would have been globe-spanning boondoggles — Prada, Gucci, Dior — are digital extravaganzas, though it can be hard to figure out exactly what they’re showing. (Next spring’s menswear? Women’s cruise collections? Something else?) The methods varied; Prada made an art piece of sorts, Dior essentially threw a ball and invited nobody to come. (They staged a live show and streamed it instead — the kind of compromise that flies under the grotesque banner of “phygital.”)

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