“Mathematics holds both the absolute and the infinite, the understandable and the forever elusive,” was the quote from Le Corbusier, The Modulor printed atop the Sid Neigum press release during London Fashion Week. The Toronto-based designer arrived in London this season, for a collaboration with DHL Exported. After a long Sunday, Neigum had the honour of closing out the night. Wandering through the presentation, I bumped into Susie from Style Bubble, witnessed a heavily intoxicated man calling out the British Fashion Council on their decision to host LFW in a car park, and got to see a Canadian on the rise create a mathematically influenced collection.
Neigum was inspired by how Le Corbusier (a Swiss architect) “harnessed the proportions of the human body to perfect his architectural works.” Meandering through the show space, you saw the cloth wrap, repel, hug, attack the body. A large black poncho sat on the model like an asymmetric shield, definition hailing from the white piping. A sandy-hued dress contained multiple folds. It looked like a complicated mathematical equation, yet it was simply solved: a slightly lofty, yet incredibly elegant number.
While the aesthetic may be difficult to grasp for some, due to its complex nature, with odd lines and curvatures, the brand values “innovation, experimentation and quality.” Manufactured in his place de naissance, Canada, the clothes are made of premium Italian fabrics. Employing technology to bring them to life, Neigum’s process is a mix between the very topical idea of ‘Manus x Machina’, the Costume Institute’s latest exhibition. Should any museum explore maths further in an exhibition, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Neigum as a fixture in the line-up.
Mathematics can produce great imagery in collections—the way it can influence shape, right down to its direct influence on the cut of the fabric, which has to be precise. This designer slots nicely into the overcrowded designer landscape, with his complex creations and unique, obscure vision. Similarly, the Sid Neigum’s woman is the perfect mix of understandable and the forever elusive.
All images are my own