I walked into the Andrea Crews Spring 2009 show held at the Jeu de Paume in Paris and was immediately let to a spot, amidst the crowd that was lined single-file along a staircase and hallway, by a woman decked-out in a one shoulder black rag-dress that exposed one of her breasts.
One look at the program notes, which were printed on the back of a poster that featured a valley of nude bodies, and I knew this would be a collection unlike any I had seen so far.
Andrea Crews is a collective led by Maroussia Rebecq. Rebecq is a fashion designer, but she is also an artist, who often collaborates with other pop and experimental artists, a filmmaker, and an activist who creates designs out of recycled clothing. She federates stylists, illustrators, musicians, video directors, and performers.
The Andrew Crews runway show was more a performance with atypical models that often looked down, smiled, and turned their heads in distraction as they strutted the runway to roaring applause in everything from dresses made of hair, to off-the shoulder sweaters worn without pants, to underwear with an elephant in the front, to nothing but an ultra-mini and a thin bandage covering their breasts.
After the show, I checked-out the backstage area which was a tiny space taken over by a bar that had been set-up for the models and production team – this was clearly a show about creativity, experimentation, and independence over anything else.