“The ‘catwalk’ is pure anthropology, something like an esoteric encrypted parade.”
Are we starting to see a trend here with my love for Vogue Italia’s editorials? This month’s issue features a spread by Paolo Roversi. His work becomes part of the whole fantasy/fairytale trend we’ve been seeing in the media since this century started. Roversi achieves the same effect through such simplicity: famous Dutch model: Lara Stone, a ton of gorgeous couture, a big spotlight, a pair of scissors, and some paper. I’ve always had a love for anything that uses shadows in this manner, like the Wayang (shadow puppets) of Bali? OMG. I die.
This is my favorite. Love this dress, Armani Prive SS10 Couture. Again, what IS that fabric? J-Lo wore a dress from this collection at the Oscars last night. To achieve sculptural effects and volume like this, with such thin fabric, it usually has to be interfaced. This means that the fabric needs to be fused with a stronger material, something that is stiffer. The interfacing is usually sandwiched between the garment’s fabric. BUT Armani’s gowns are practically translucent. So the textiles for these dresses were definitely woven just for him. I’m so jealous. Anyway, I’m babbling. Here’s some more pretty pictures:
“Beauty is terror. Whatever we call beautiful, we quiver before it.” – Some advice read from an old friend, by an older friend.
Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren are the performance artists of the fashion world. This can be seen in the outrageous garments they create; looks so bold and innovative, the very act of wearing becomes a performance piece. Sometimes they take a much more active role in these performances.
In the winter of 1999, the duo appeared on the catwalk to dress a single model, Maggie Rizer, in a presentation called “Matryoshka” or “The Russian Doll.”
The show opened with Rizer dressed in a tunic made of coarse burlap or muslin. They then draped a total of nine layers of elaborately jeweled and embroidered pieces on the model. After each layer, the small silver pedestal on which Rizer stood was rotated to give the audience an opportunity to see each set before the next was laid on. When the final look, a huge evening cape embellished with a single rose and made of the same material as the first look, had been draped, Rizer was carrying approximately 154 lbs. of couture on her body.
Horsting and Snoeren had “intended this presentation as an ode to exclusivity and unavailability, the things that give fashion its aura. Once occluded by the next layer, the previous layer remained present on stage, but impossible for the audience to see.” It is very interesting that the final layer was made of a material much less luxurious than the preceding layers, further highlighting their intentions.
Yesterday, the duo presented their A/W 2010 collection at Paris Fashion Week. The show was called “Glamour Factory” and it was reminiscent of “The Russian Doll.” The model, Kristen McMenam (a popular 90’s model like Rizer), walked out onto the stage engulfed by layers of clothing. The designers then joined her and removed one layer of clothing at a time. These were used to dress the younger models for their walks down the runway. The pieces of clothing would transform once they were passed to the younger models, a sculpted cape on McMenam would become a skirt, and a leather coat was pulled inside-out and transformed into a beaded and crystal-studded one.
McMenam becomes the embodiment of femininity, or at least the physical representation of this particular collection’s ingenue. She is the core and from her all of the looks and different ideas are pulled. It is very interesting that she is also an older model, and the garments are being passed down to younger models. The action is like the “changing of the guard” or a student-mentor relationship.
Once McMenam was stripped down to a nude bodysuit, the process reversed. Again, the transformation continued and dresses became capes and skirts. Horsting and Snoeren explained that, “This time around, we want to show that something can be both wearable and extreme at the same time. It goes beyond a mere idea; it is literally ready for production.”
images are from the book “The House of Viktor & Rolf”
The new video from Ok Go for “This Too Shall Pass” off of “Of the Blue Color of the Sky” is AMAZING! I think all of us have dreamed of putting together a Rube Goldberg machine since we were kids. The first time I watched this, I just sat there and waited for the next thing to happen, and to see what would happen to that car!
I’ve been planning our upcoming shoot for the Spring/Summer 2010 lookbook. It’s funny because I have so many ideas and will probably end up using all of them at some point for future collections. I come from a fine art background so the lookbooks are an ideal medium. Studio shots of models against a backdrop and posing with wind-blown hair are pretty, but after awhile it gets really boring. Those types of photographs are perfect for showing off a garment. It’s almost like photographing sculpture. You want to get it from all angles, include a few details, and capture the overall essence of the piece. On the other hand, the lookbook is the perfect place to breathe life into a collection, to say something, to entertain, and to give the clothes some character. I guess back in the day they used to be called “image books.”
I was on the subway thinking about new ideas, and I remembered this editorial that was featured in Vogue Italia in July of 2007, photographed by Steven Meisel. It’s brilliant, and I have yet to see an editorial that has struck me the way this one did. I still have this magazine, but the actual images printed really big and hanging on my wall would be better. I was really drawn to their narrative qualities, as well as the paparazzi style of some of the shots. It’s such a humorous, but beautiful, critique on all the tabloid drama at the time. A stylish homage to our messed-up pop princesses.
I don’t have time to paint or work on any art projects lately. So until then, I have the lookbooks. You can still view the Fall/Winter 2009 Lookbook here. The new one will be up later on this year.