Juana Martín

Haute Couture A/W ‘24 | Paris


July 5, 2024

Show took place June 24, 2024

By Miu Xia

The collection, “Pared de Cal,” is named after the limestone white-washed walls found in the villages of Andalusia, where Martín hails from. The designer discovered her inspiration in Saint Teresa, the Spanish patron saint of lacemakers, whose popular saying “between nuns and monks, lime and stone wall” brings focus to the intersection of divinity and the imperfect reality of human nature.

Good and evil are bridged by simple yet powerful means in “Pared de Cal.” The distinct use of colors on opposite ends of the spectrum, black and white, represents holiness existing hand in hand with sin. Smatters of blood-red serve as a connection between celestial beings and the delicate makeup of the human body. A wealth of Chantilly lace accented by shiny, silvered fruit drives home Martín’s point against binarity: purity and temptation walk parallel with each other, and for one to exist, so must the other.

Many of Martín’s designs feature a mysterious, unignorable motif: fish. Metallic net textures combined with a zealous placement of glimmeringly oversized fish bones donned as earrings, brooches, and across-the-chest embellishments suggest that the designer is manifesting the same blessing the fishermen of Andalusia pray for every July when they hold their annual religious festival celebrating the Virgen del Carmen: abundance. An irony exists in the way greed is painted as the deadliest of sins, but it is only human nature to seek an abundance of what keeps a village alive, and Martín’s collection alludes to the impossible balance between the two worlds.

Martín honors her life, her homeland, and her people with the attention to detail she put into “Pared de Cal.” The collection serves as an intimate chance for her audience to peer into her artist’s soul — an increasingly rare opportunity as the world is yanked into winds of transient, substance-less virality. Martín creates from meaning found deep within, making “Pared de Cal” a fitting tribute to the bare bones of what make up her person, and perhaps, make for her magnum opus.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Juana Martín

Video Source: Atelier Juana Martín YouTube