SoHo’s Newest Pop-Up A. Human Turns Fantasy to Fashion

If you’re looking to step into another world anytime soon, boy do I have a place for you: A. Human, the Instagrammable pop-up shop looking to combine real-life and fantasy with art and fashion.

Stepping foot into 48 Mercer Street, I had no idea what to expect – I had come upon tickets last minute, and any research I did mostly baffled me. I will say this: A. Human is not easily explained, and this is one of its greatest attributes.

The night started with a small performative introduction to the showroom. Like the beginning of most interactive experiences performed by dramatic New Yorkers trying to sell you something, I thought I might be inducted into a cult. But, like, in a good way. In a magical-forest-cult kind of way.

My feet, used to stepping on NYC pavement found themselves on mulch and soil, and surrounded by shrubbery. Then, all the sudden right in front of me was a live human head: a model submerged in soil, chest-deep, modeling a collar of crystals and skin-like ruffles.

Their creations, aptly worn by stoic human models, showcased how the 3D-printed spectacles could bring out the “true form” of anyone. When I asked who exactly was buying the products, it was decidedly “the creative type”, mostly appealing to those who would wear the accessories to functions like music festivals or parties. They also claimed to be getting orders for red carpets. I cannot wait to see Ryan Seacrest try to navigate that.

Hollywood influencers like Chrissy Teigen, Tan France, and yes, Kim Kardashian, have all posted pictures with their body modifications, each accessory pairing with their respective personalities and aesthetics.

Thus, I assumed the pieces were like high-end bags, due to their innovation and exclusivity. However, the pieces – what they call “body modifications” – are fairly accessible. The brand’s mission, in fact, was to create pieces that highlighted the fantasy and individuality in all humans.

The most publicized part of the event was their use of intense visuals. Art installations, bright colors and mirrors made the exhibit more interesting for those who weren’t in the market for a demagorgon spine. My favorite was a wall of projected kaleidoscopic, colorful backgrounds. Having my skin flooded with colors gave me (what must be) the feeling of wearing an A. Human garment: magical and transformative.

Their artistic vision of advancing the human form to create such surrealistic yet natural products is another article in itself – it sparked a debate in the group of friends I went with, and my boyfriend (surprisingly very passionate) about whether the items pushed the boundaries too much or not enough, and if it would become a fad or a future mega-trend in fashion. Like most celebrity trends, everyone has an opinion, or at least, they will.

The showroom is open until the end of September and is located in SoHo, Manhattan. Though I never did join a cult (probably for the better) I got an intense amount of insights into the future of fashion, and of course, the human body. And Instagram pictures. Maybe I should post A. Nother one….

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