Nuria de Miguel and Marcus Kurz on MBFW International Edition
Mr. Kurz, what was the inspiration and idea behind the initiative of connecting international MBFWs?
Marcus Kurz: It is more important than ever to think globally and digitally – to see the big picture. It has always been important to us to view MBFW in an international context and, by extension, to showcase international talent. Each individual venue – be it Madrid, Moscow or Tbilisi – may stand on its own, but we are united by many common goals, first and foremost to promote fashion as a cultural asset and narrative. Given that Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week has moved from July to September this season in order to fit seamlessly into the international show calendar, it was only logical to push the international orientation of the program further as well.
Ms. de Miguel, what was your first thought when you received the request to support MBFW Berlin with an international contribution from your network?
That it would be a fantastic event. Not only because it allows us to advance in our goal of internationalizing MBFWMADRID, but also because it is an alliance with the Berlin runway, which will bring us closer to a potentially important market for Spanish fashion: Germany.
Why is it important to create synergies within different MBFWs and a network that works across national borders?
Marcus Kurz: Because it is generally important to focus on common ground. Inspiration, ideas and creativity arise through exchange and are the foundation of progress.
Nuria de Miguel: We live in a globalized world and so it is essential to open up to other markets and let the world know about the talent of Spanish creators. Digitalization and making a connection with other parts of the world and with other gateways has become fundamental. That is why we believe in the importance of this collaboration.
Ms. de Miguel, how did the selection of the brand OTRURA come about?
Nuria de Miguel: We decided that OTRURA would be the firm to represent the Spanish fashion runway at MBFWBerlin due to having been the winner of the award for the best collection in April 2021 at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Madrid and for its strong brand values: sustainability, identity and contemporaneity. I believe that its philosophy and fashion concept will be of interest to other audiences and markets.
How do you see the future of MBFW and its individual sites? What opportunities do you see in bridging digital and physical formats and shows? And in which direction would you like to see the event go in general?
Marcus Kurz: You can’t replace a physical show or presentation one-to-one with a digital one. The experience is always different when you’re sitting on the catwalk, listening to the music and feeling the atmosphere. Nevertheless, I think it’s great that fashion and events in general can be made accessible to a wider audience via digital media. We are now producing virtual reality videos for individual contributions and installations during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Berlin, which I think is groundbreaking. Basically, I’m convinced that collaborative thinking is becoming more and more valuable. In the future, I see not only an interplay of different formats and international collaborations, but above all cross-industry collaborations in which different disciplines work together to create something completely new.
Nuria de Miguel: At MBFWMADRID we are firm supporters of face-to-face runway shows – as long as health conditions allow it – and of a hybrid format, in which face-to-face presentations are complemented by digital formats. In the middle of the pandemic, we adapted the runway format to health conditions, toward a hybrid format. We were the only runway in the world that maintained that presence in its September 2020 and April 2021 editions, accompanied by presentations in a digital format.
I believe that the hybrid format is the perfect formula for the presentation of collections. The digital resources that we all used in the pandemic are here to stay and are essential today for exponentially expanding the audience and enriching the viewer’s experience – without losing sight of the fact that fashion has an important emotional factor, and face-to-face fashion shows are the biggest generators of emotions.
What do you wish for future collaborations between different MBFWs?
Marcus Kurz: The idea is not only to offer selected designers a digital platform, but also to involve them on site with a physical show or presentation in the future. But first of all, I’m looking forward to seeing the Der Berliner Salon editorial film that opened MBFW at MBFWMADRID in the middle of the month.
Nuria de Miguel: My desire is for these collaborations to be maintained over time and expanded. These synergies have a very positive effect on the fashion industry in each country and on the designers who participate in these fashion weeks and their international reach.