Monday, December 24, 2012

Exhibit: Mannequin - le corps de la mode.

Le Musée Galliera presents:
Mannequin - le corps de la mode
Opens: Paris, February 1st 

Sylvie Lécallier, exhibition curator and coordinator of the Musée Galliera photography collection stated:
The model is one of the vital cogs in the couture house and ready-to-wear machines, reproduced ad infinitum from the earliest 19th century fashion illustrations through today's magazines, advertising slots and videos. Shaped by and for fashion, she embodies all the contradictions of an industry torn between business and creativity and chronically committed to producing images.
Models were once called "mannequins", a borrowing from French and initially a reference to the wickerwork dummies used to display garments in the dressmaker's workshop. When applied to living models the term kept its implication of an "inanimate object" existing to call potential buyers' attention to the garment. The model, to use today's word, has been tirelessly promoted as a feminine ideal of youth and beauty, an artificial embodiment of perfection intended to win over the clientele. In response to the fashion economy's need for profitability, she has been reduced to a specific format, forced into repetitive, mechanical poses and moulded with makeup and retouching. A pure product of her era, the model as model body must meet physical and aesthetic requirements which, as part of a specific commercial context, leave little or no room for individuality or realism.
Beginning in the early 20th century, society women and actresses were long fashion's ongoing icons, endowing brands and magazines with the benefits of their fame. It was only later that the faces and names of professional models became generally known, revealed by the couturiers and photographers whose creations and muses they were. As stars and celebrities they were instruments for selling the glossies. Recognisable but malleable, they capitalised on image and personality, adopting fictional roles under the stage-management of photographers whose fantasies they embodied and promoted beyond the world of fashion.
From the anonymous model to the cover girl, from the clothes horse to the sex symbol, from the supermodel to the girl next door: ambivalence is all in the sheer mass of photographs devoted to the model's commercial, aesthetic and human worth, and the stereotypes she represents. In this choice of images mostly from the Musée Galliera collection, the exhibition offers a history of fashion photography from the point of view not only of the photographer, but of the model as well.
WWD: The show will present close to 120 images of fashion models from videos and magazines, combined with actual mannequins. It includes the work of photographers Horst P. Horst, Erwin Blumenfeld, Henry Clarke, Helmut Newton, Guy Bourdin, Nick Knight, Corinne Day and Juergen Teller.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


This is a darling little video made for Lily's Holiday Collection 2012. Directed by Mark Choiniere. 

All images VIA

Monday, December 10, 2012


Not long ago, I was approached by a student from 'The Australian Academy of Design' to write a few pieces for their graduate showcase's accompanying gazette -  'The Edit.' 

It was a wonderful project to be a part of, and I was really impressed to see the gazette after it had gone to print. Above is the cover of the magazine, and below is my article discussing the graduating students' collections. 



For Australian Academy of Design’s 2012 graduate showcase, each student has designed a collection that embodies him or her as a designer. The collections culminate months of hard work, and showcase each designer’s vision, talent and passion for the industry. They stem from the idea that fashion is something that should inspire people, open minds, challenge ideals and evoke emotion. Having the freedom to design purely for creative pleasure, each designer has explored different mediums and processes, working diligently to create a unique body of work. 

The students’ sources of inspiration are varied; each aiming to produce an innovative collection that is relevant to today’s society, and that says something about the world we live in. The question of gender and its role within the garment industry is challenged, and many have sought inspiration from times gone by, whilst also injecting a modern twist into their designs.

Whilst some of these designs are somewhat adventurous and avant-garde, all garments have been designed to be both versatile and wearable – each designer understanding that the modern man and woman needs clothing that compliments their lifestyles. The collections highlight that clothing can in fact be unconventional, but at the same time practical and ready-to-wear.

These 15 designers have used an array of techniques, colours, fabric textures, silhouettes, lines, patterns, embellishments and prints in the hope that their end products will appeal to a wide audience. That is the beauty of graduate showcases – they act as platforms for designers to experiment and grow, and give them the freedom to create without the pressure to please buyers.

With the Australian fashion industry facing a greater shift towards fast fashion, these talented young designers prove that good craftsmanship and innovative design is still well and truly alive. It is an exciting time for up and coming fashion designers, and this showcase aims to support and celebrate the future of our local fashion industry.
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