A line written by performance poet Hector Aponysus for Dystopia Lives, “Looking for a vocation in the decline of civilization” sums up the state we find ourselves in.The incubation of Dystopia Lives saw Liam come together with Aponysus for a process Liam calls “the benefits of looking at where things are at but through different lenses”. The point to connect to the now and create bars of poetry that can be used to emphasise the collection’s intent. Style is always an attempt to find yourself and your people. Today the only maps that seem to make sense of our present reality come from dystopian fiction, illuminatingly the genre is rich with strong aesthetics.
Dystopia Lives is also a play on the Kuato Lives graffiti seen in Total Recall, and written in defiance of the Martian governor and in honour of Kuato, the psychic alien rebel hero in hiding. Thus Dystopia Lives can be read as signal of mutual understanding that darkness can be beat. The overwhelmingly streetcast show makes clear these are clothes designed for wearing by individuals not clones.
Also taken from Total Recall is a print inspired by the film’s greatest icon, Mary the triple breasted sex worker. The print also works as 21st century reimagining of Seditionaries’ Tits tee. Further photo prints are drawn from photos taken by Liam in China, the state set to define our future in this Chinese century.
This focus on product has also seen Liam develop his collaborations with brands. Further dystopian reference comes in the form of Liam’s work with Christys’, the British hatmakers in existence since 1773 and their creative director Noel Stewart. Merging an informal bucket style with a white take on the City gent’s bowler, reminiscent of the bowlers worn by the droogs in Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange.
Liam has doubled his stockists in the last six months thanks to last season’s focus on refining his signature product. This season sees innovation design solutions and technical elevation, designed to add value come to the fore. Knit trousers and jumpers feature flat knits, small rib, big rib, and horizontal rib knits, all knit in a combination of wools and cotton. A fur coat made in collaboration with Kopenhagen Fur displays a jagged hem intarsia fluro fur, and a revealed leather and vinyl reverse. Outerwear is a growth area matching the jersey pieces for sellout status in recent seasons. Padded salopette style trousers feature removable pockets and since puffa jackets “will always be worn with a hoodie” some are designed without collars.
The military influence on the post apocalyptic, dystopian, Mad Max, industrial vibe is visible throughout the collection. In the fatigue colours: forest, olive and acid greens. And a digital print camouflage designed by Liam’s team and applied to custom-designed iconic Levi’s® 501® jeans and Levi’s® Trucker jackets that introduce colour and print to denim’s unique architectural rigidity.