Barax, the Submerged City

Sardinia, natural beauties and the blurred lines between reality and myth are the backbone of Antonio Marras's poetics for the latest collection. Through the story of Barax, a tale of passion, music, dance and godlike forces, Antonio Marras unveils his unprecedented Pre FW 2022 collection. 

Towards the north-west of the Mediterranean there is an Island. In North-west of the island there is a comforting and placid lowland called la Nurra. In the North-west of the lowland there is a lake, Lake Baratz. Nourished by the Rio Dei Giunchi, it has no emissaries and yet it always magically maintains the same depth.

The lake is the only natural one on the Island and it is surrounded by a lush pine forest with sand dunes reaching five meters in height. Then unexpectedly, dwarf palm trees, orchids, myrtle, broom, brambles and blackberries, strawberry trees and rosemary inhabit the area. An infinite amount of bird species and magnificent dragonflies graciously fly over forming fickle baroque clouds.

They say the lake is enchanted. And once, long ago, a city called Barax rose in its place.
Barax was an unusual city, alive and whirling. Coloured with a palette reminiscent of the roofs of Rome or the brick walls of Siena, burnt oranges, beiges, browns, clay and turtledove tones were seen everywhere. Then suddenly, houses were coloured in bright pink, yellow cadmium and a rich light blue.

Characterized by rounded stone houses and adorned with numerous squares, winding roads crossed the city. The Piazza was decorated with mosaics that would sometimes form paisleys, roses or simple but articulated squares of all sizes. The city’s inhabitants were specialized in the weaving of precious fabrics such as lace, devoré and silks, while others made knitwear in all possible colours and with diverse methods of manufacture. There were also those who wove men’s fabrics where plaid would be the overriding pattern.

The inhabitants became famous all over the world and were known as the ‘Madras del Mediterraneo’. There were tailors and seamstresses with extraordinary handwork skills which created trousers suits, short skirts and wide capes. Unfortunately, it appears that its inhabitants had attracted the divine punishment for having taken earthly pleasures too seriously and for having forgotten penance.

Thus, Barax was made to sink by the will of God like Sodoma and Gomorra.
It is said that only a beautiful and virtuous girl who worked as an embroiderer was given the chance to save herself. Verdina was her name, she was blonde like grain, pale like mother-of-pearl and as intelligent as the gryphon that flew over those skies. It seems that God sent three angels to warn Verdina: “Escape and you will be saved, but be aware, do not turn around for any reason whatsoever, otherwise the worst will come for you.”

Verdina decided to abandon the city but the thought of leaving behind her favourite suit which she still hadn’t worn convinced her to turn around. Suddenly, an immense uproar like that of the Niagara falls ran over her. At that same instant Verdina was transformed into a rock, the city was submerged by deep waters and in its place a large lake appeared.

As the story goes, every year, an unknown day, Verdina goes back to being a real girl and uses the little time she has before becoming a stone again, by constantly changing attire. And I still think about what may have remained deep below that muddy and grey water, so unlike “Sardinian waters”. Some remarkable garment, abandoned, forgotten, and ruined, waiting for someone to divein and give it a new life.

Undoubtedly in Barax, our little Atlantis, our submerged city, we swim instead of walking, we smile instead of talking, we hug instead of arguing and we change clothes whenever we desire without the need of special occasions or specific requirements.

Under the waters there is all the time that one needs, all is dance and all is music.