Bibhu Mohapatra’s Haunted House
Opening with the click, click, click of a Bentley’s blinking hazard lights, Bibhu Mohapatra’s latest short film is simultaneously luxurious and broodily tense. Debuting exclusively here, the short stars Canadian model Dani Seitz as she wanders—decked in the designer’s Fall ’13 furs and chiffons—around the Hudson River Valley’s Plumb-Bronson House, which once served as a correctional facility for wayward women.
“The place has such a long history. There’s no telling how many individual stories must have passed through those fields, those walls,” Mohapatra told Style.com. “Ella Fitzgerald reportedly spent time there. It stirred me.”
In the clip, Mohapatra also pays homage to the artist Man Ray, who, incidentally, inspired the “darkness” and “moodiness” on the designer’s Fall catwalk. “The spiritual element of the grounds gave way to incorporating Man Ray’s techniques, such as with his photograms and solarizing methods.”
The flick marks just one highlight of Mohapatra’s banner 2013, as his four-year-old label continues to grow. So far, he’s sourced new funding, inked an exclusive deal with China’s biggest luxury retailer, Lane Crawford, and hired a company president. Mohapatra also gave us a sneak peek at Spring ’14, which takes aesthetic cues from former New York City Ballet soloist Wendy Whelan, artist Olafur Eliasson, and a certain ominous flower barred from use in Hindu religious practices. “There’s always a little bit of a twisted darkness,” Mohapatra said, smiling.