Björn Borg #TrainingForMars

It’s Björn Borg, he breaks all the rules…Overheard at #TRAININGFORMARS

One of the most exciting shows and even events I’ve been to saw me hiking over a bridge in heels at night as we tried to decipher the directions to a secret location, somewhere beyond the metro line. We finally ran through darkened woods  into a clearing with a giant space-station type thing, shooting out beams of light in all directions. As we waited for our call-up, Stockholm’s glitterati chattered outside in the bare earth, in such a state of anticipation, they even forgot their customary cool expressions. Eyes shone and there was a charming air of nervous excitement. As I later heard someone remark, “It’s Björn Borg, he breaks all the rules.” They weren’t wrong.

(In the weeks since the show, I’ve changed location so many times, lived out of an overfilled carry-on, stowed away numerous boxes, grappled with climate changes, sun protection, cold weather insulation and copious usage of Google Translate App, that I might have even been to Mars.. but I digress.)


Bursts of sound, loud droning, clouds of smoke and dust particles, tiers of beautiful people staring into a strobe-lit labyrinth, their stilettos and trainers speckled in the red soil that surrounded us, like some alien archeological dig: the scene  was literally light years from the runway.

If this was space, I wanted to go.DV

Suspended from the ceiling, a circle of space-age material formed a screen on which messages about the Mars Training were formed. Four members of the Mars drive, volunteers who would one day leave for the red planet, never to return, apparently sat in chairs, impassively facing the audience. At this point we split up to take photos from different viewpoints and as I clambered up platforms and scooted onto a higher tier, I couldn’t help feeling  a shiver of menace, combined with a wave of delight. If this was space, I wanted to go. But would I ever return myself?

1923Björn Borg #TrainingForMars 9Björn Borg #TrainingForMars 1

Fashion or an alternate reality, I can’t say.DV

A shimmering, silhouetted model appeared in the distance, dressed for some epic battle with unknown terrain, with boots and a close-fitting helmet, so many influences ran through my mind: Russian Constructivism, Futurism, dance, Olympians, warriors. It was hard to remind myself that this was a body wear show. This was Fashion, Theatre and a brisk canter through my art history classes all at once. We were no longer in a clearing in a Stockholm wood, but ringside at a gladiator pit, waiting for the contestants to finish their patterns in the dirt in some space tournament and let the fighting commence.

Cosmonauts Unite!DV

Only this was no stolid, well-muscled crew, these were cerebral athletes, lithe and sinewy and closer to Prometheans than jocks. Male, female, whatever, they prowled like hunters or strutted proudly, weaving round each other in patterns, each marking their territory. Their sense of purpose and heroism was so convincing, I forgot this was a show and half expected to see Katniss Everdeen striding into the maze, shouldering her bow.

Fashion or an alternate reality, I can’t say. All I know is, it was incredible.



Photography: Dear Velvet & Rob Homewood

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