Y2K Fashion? The Qi Xi Campaign of BALENCIAGA
Balenciaga campaign (writes: I love you) Qixi- the Chinese lunar calendar Valentine’s day is around the corner. Like every other year, most luxury brands had come up with ideas of limited seasonal editions to impress their Chinese customers. Recently, Balenciaga had released their seasonal editions for the Chinese Valentine’s day …
Qixi- the Chinese lunar calendar Valentine’s day is around the corner. Like every other year, most luxury brands had come up with ideas of limited seasonal editions to impress their Chinese customers.
Recently, Balenciaga had released their seasonal editions for the Chinese Valentine’s day on their Tian mao (a branch of Alibaba’s Tao Bao) official online shop. And this time, again, Balenciaga’s art direction became the hit topic and received both love and hate from the audience.
With the revolving of meme culture, early Internet culture, and the Y2K (the year 2000) style, many mainstream media and entertainment started to adopt this style to access the younger generations. This time the branding banner of Balenciaga’s Valentine’s day edition is inspired by the style of old electrical clock calendar as well as the early 2000 QQ Space (similar with My Space) aesthetic. Some people think that this branding style is very outdated and doesn’t go well with their expectations of the avant-garde Balenciaga. While some think this campaign shows a sense of humor and reflects the different attitude of the brand.
If you had been following Balenciaga on their social media, you would know that Balenciaga is already not the traditional distant luxury brand or the street fashion with big logos anymore. The new creative director, Demna Gvasalia, totally altered Balenciaga’s proception and the way the brand communicates. Balenciaga’s Instagram account had utterly overthrown the running mode of any traditional luxury brands by posting random people’s photos and inspirations instead of strictly brand-related content.
Demna Gvasalia had been working for Balenciaga as Art directors since 2015. He had previously worked at Maison Martin Margiela and Louis Vuitton, and have his own designer’s brand Vetements. With his lead, Balenciaga had transformed from an old luxury brand to an avant-garde high fashion streetwear brand.
In this Qixi campaign, Demna Gvasalia used the element of graffiti and Chinese display handwriting to reflect the fusion of two different cultures. Finding the balance of the brand voice and the needs of costumers is always a central and debating topic for any label.