"In the backyard of the [Royal Academy of Fine Arts] school was this little building, on the verge of collapsing. You would have to very carefully go over the stairs, because if you took one mis-step, you could literally push your feet through them. It was almost dangerous. So I think that the whole thing melted well together. It was the switch from the 80s to 90s, the reaction on excess with minimalism and deconstruction, the first appearance of grunge. So that feeling of romanticism, together with the history, the building and the run down corridors with the statues, it really did make a big impact on how you formed your visual language. I really think there was something quite dark and magical about it, matching perfectly the zeitgeist of the period."
Three people are chosen to each represent their professional discipline in presenting their vision on the collection: New York based photographer Mark Borthwick, London based stylist Jane How and Paris based writer Sydney Picasso. Mark Borthwick’s project included the projection of a video in two parts shot in New York in early March 1998 and a book entitled ‘2000-1’. The video features a verbal interaction between three women wearing garments of the collection. The book features photographs taken during the shooting of the video and is published in the autumn of 1998. For Jane How’s project fifteen life-size puppets are each dressed in an outfit of the collection styled by Jane. Two professional puppeteers manipulate each puppet, specially made in UK. Sydney Picasso decided to produce a white cotton ribbon, on which a continuous text is printed, as well as a pamphlet entitled ‘Endless Threads’. The tract is distributed and the ribbon is tied to everyone’s wrist as they enter the space. Thirty members of the Maison Martin Margiela staff, in blouses blanches (white coats) serve red wine to the crowed while the three visions on the collection are being expressed. A soundtrack by Mark Borthwick plays loudly.