SPRING SUMMER 2021: ‘ANTHROPOCENE’
MITHRIDATE LAUNCH LONDON FASHION WEEK SHOWCASE TAKING AN EXPERIMENTAL AND
PROVOCATIVE FORMAT AT SERPENTINE GALLERY
Mithridate’s Spring Summer 2021 collection, entitled ‘Anthropocene’
, is translated into a performance installation
by critically acclaimed artists Ania Catherine and Dejha Ti, represented by MTArt Agency, held within the Royal
Park grounds of London’s iconic Serpentine Gallery.
Founder Demon Zhang’s collection is brought to life through a performance as an experiential journey focusing on
the effects of the anthropocene on the planet and its inhabitants.
Building on Zhang’s focus on the fragility, vulnerability, and beauty of the life forms that are threatened by this era of
unprecedented human impact on the planet, the collection is represented through three key stories; ‘Oceanic,
‘Humanity’ and ‘Landscape’, told through the garments as raw source material to create a multisensory
The models inhabit the gallery grounds in three performance vignettes, embodying the concepts that drive the
collection—each activity of the models is a metaphor for the necessity for collective and individual human action.
Each of the three vignettes tells a story from the collection’s overarching ‘Anthropocene’
theme; ‘Oceanic’ and
‘Landscape’ worlds collide with the harsh effects of ‘Humanity’ and its environmental impact on the planet.
‘Oceanic’ dives into a coral reef, paying tribute to the bleached, dead coral, depleted of its colour, predominantly
white, voluminous oversized and tiered dresses and shirts are embellished with embroidered coral shapes overlaid
onto starched crisp white fabrics, layered with deep indigo ‘oil spill’ shaped corsets.
A specially created UV reactive paint was applied to fabric to reveal as sunlight hits, an intricate pattern made up of
soft pastel tones, reenacting the flickering daylight onto the water’s edge, highlighting muted soft shades of lilac,
lemon and powder pinks, representative of the sun’s powerful, damaging UV rays.
‘Humanity’ is a stark contrast with a powerful utilitarian silhouette; sharp tailoring in the form of oversized
masucline trouser and fitted skirts suits, high waisted shorts all presented in a military colour palette of khaki, forest
and earthy greens. Styled against a print depicting twisted metal plane crash scenes, wreckage engulfed by
overgrown, entwined vines of a remote jungle, representing the unbalance of humanity destroying nature whilst
nature fights back. Embellished flashes of neon toggles on cords add to the imbalance, reminiscent of industrial
construction/ destruction sites and parachute emergency landing equipment.
‘Landscape’ brings a softer, harmonious botanical influence, featuring detailed prints of rich red berries, poppy’s,
dried grass and wood chippings, alongside a howling wolf all woven into the designs. Billowing layered corset
dresses in silk tulles offer a romantic, feminine hint towards mother nature whilst contrasted against masuclaine
Pearls and Swarovski crystals are interspersed throughout each story, either as embellishment details or as
accessories. Swarovski crystal insects contrasted with vintage military aircrafts feature as ornate brooches and
jewellery, whilst bold shopper bags feature activist slogans depicting ‘Strength in Nature’.
Swarovski crystal embellished hair slides complete the look.
A collaboration with French perfumery brand Diptyque adds an olfactory dimension with earth based notes infused
within the grounds, a blend of Rose, Figuier and Mousses; fragrances and oils chosen and paired together
exclusively for the Mithridate showcase that contributed to the sensory experience.
Mithridate Founder Demon Zhang shared;
‘As I approached this collection, particularly during intense moments of reflection under lockdown, I
was drawn to the fragility of our world, the beauty found in nature against the impact of human
behaviour, the importance to coexist peacefully has never been more necessary; to respect the
planetary boundaries, our mother nature.
Ania and Dejha bring to life this poignant message beautifully through their interpretation and powerful
performance. They inspire me and give me hopeful confidence that creativity can, under challenging
difficult times, always find its beauty.’
Born as a creative response to lockdown, Mithridate’s Spring Summer 2021 collection follows on from a successful
collaboration with Catherine and Ti in early 2020, entitled Natural Subject(s) as part of the brand’s ‘Collective
Series’, a digital based platform, aiming to reveal an ongoing series as a collective body of work, exploring art as a
multi sensory, immersive experience.
Zhang’s vision is to grow the brand’s global artistic community, fusing the creative mediums of fashion, art, design
and technology as part of the digital offering, igniting creativity through collaboration, providing unity and support
under crisis whilst celebrating the power of innovation and creativity despite our world’s challenges.
Mithridate developed the collaboration concept with award-winning MTArt Agency and its Founder Marine Tanguy,
who represents the most exciting up and coming visual artists worldwide, artists with innovative techniques, inspiring
content and strong messaging.
Hair by Johanna Cree-Brown at Trevor Sorbie for L’Oréal Professionnel Make up by Jorge Balzaretti supported by
NOTES TO EDITOR
Gender neutral, luxury Chinese brand Mithridate was founded by Demon Zhang in 2018 with an overarching
appreciation for art and community at the heart of the brand’s DNA.
Through Zhang’s considered designs, her work celebrates luxury sustainable couture, bespoke craftsmanship
combined with ancient Chinese artisan techniques to provide strength and protection whilst empowering her
collaborative, artistic, global community.
Zhang’s desire is to nurture a global community for the brand through collaboration as she captures the delicate
balance between romance, independence and self-preservation, encouraging self confidence and body positivity to
Through each bespoke piece, Zhang aims for the wearer to feel protection from the outside world whilst giving
strength to thrive by championing humanitarianism and environmental issues through the brand’s global
community and network.
With a deep understanding, appreciation and constantly inspired by ‘art’ in multi-sensory forms, the brand was
conceived during Zhang’s countless hours of research as a student at Central Saint Martins in London’s art galleries
The creative vision for the brand is to provide a sartorial cure for those who are continually exploring and expressing
their identities through their clothes.
Her fascination with the term “mithridate” was nonetheless a sign of fate, which led to the establishment of her
namesake fashion brand and growing her all female team and atelier. The inspiration for the name is not a mere
coincidence but bears a deep and purposeful significance.
In history, King Mithridates VI of Pontus believed he could fortify his body and become immune to all poisons by
ingesting small, non-lethal quantities of his semi-mythical remedy over time. Legend says he discovered a special
mixture of herbs and chemical substances which became an antidote
to any poison.
Nowadays, mithridate refers to any all-purpose medicine and has transcended its original meaning referring to the
practice of self-protection through acquired immunity.
ANIA CATHERINE & DEJHA TI
Critically acclaimed Los Angeles-based duo Ania Catherine and Dejha Ti, conceptual artists whose work merges
environments, performance and technology, creating immersive experiences that draw audiences into their
idiosyncratic worlds. Their expertise collide -Ti with an extensive background in immersive art and
human-computer interaction (HCI), and Catherine a recognised choreographer, performance artist and gender
Ti and Catherine’s approach is rooted in the understanding that immersion is not only a physical state, but also an
emotional and psychological one, a like-minded approach Mithridate’s Founder Demon also considers within her
creative process, Ti and Catherine’s employs nuance within scale, focused on producing a feeling instead of a
The duo’s ongoing collaborative practice culminates in innumerable forms ranging from large-scale installations,
digital experiences, performance art, film, choreography, and combinations thereof. Seeing questions as origins for
creativity, they are interested in ways that art and technology can be merged and harnessed not for entertainment,
but as a means to reflect on, understand, and shape new realities.
Founded in 2015, MTArt Agency is a certified B Corp® award-winning talent agency for the most exciting up and
coming visual artists worldwide, and a creative agency that delivers exciting art-driven projects for brands, public
bodies and cultural organisations. The collaborations that MTArt Agency implement between its artists and leading
brands such as Chloe, Method, Diptyque & Mithridate affirm brands’ positions as influential and forward thinking
leaders, secure extensive PR with both press and social media, and deliver sales. MTArt Agency uses its expertise in
spotting the best artistic talents and matching them to the right brand partners to activate meaningful, impactful
projects. With its flexible business model, MTArt Agency’s artistic responses, and ability to align with brands’
messaging, leads the way for the new normal in producing creative content. The projects with Mithridate at the
Serpentine, and Sofitel and St James’s for Silver Linings illustrate how visual artists, Ania Catherine and Dejha Ti,
can collaborate, using their immersive art to create innovative experiences for audiences that closely align with the
values of Mithridate, Sofitel and St James’s, and weave threads of positivity for a post lock-down world.
Marine Tanguy; ‘What a dream. I have been a fan of Pina Bausch for the past ten years and the very idea of
seeing our artists Ania Catherine and Dejha Ti directing a performance with the clothes of Mithridate with the
background of the Serpentine Gallery feels too surreal.. especially in 2020. It only takes a special group of
creatives to strive, hope and make it happen and the world can be optimistic again.’
Dating from the commencement of significant human impact on Earth’s geology and ecosystems, including, but not
limited to, anthropogenic climate change. The time period coincides with the great acceleration, a post WW11 time
during socioeconomic and Earth system trends started increasing dramatically and the atomic age.
Human impact on the environment or anthropogenic impact on the environment includes changes to biophysical
environments, and ecosystems, biodiversity and natural resources caused directly or indirectly by humans,
including global warming, environmental degradation (such as ocean acidification), mass extinction and
biodiversity loss, ecological crisis and ecological collapse. population growth, overconsumption, overexploitation,
pollution and deforestation.
Planetary boundaries is a concept involving Earth system processes that contain environmental boundaries.
Aiming to define a safe operating space for humanity for the International community, including governments at all
levels, international organisations, civil society, the scientific community and the private sector as a precondition for
The framework is based on scientific evidence that human actions since the industrial revolution has become the
main driver of global environmental change.