Fashion and Art. Two worlds that are undeniably interwoven together and inspired by each other. (Louis Vuitton has just launched a range with Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama)
When I heard that the British Fashion Council commissioned nine British designer and contemporary artists to collaborate together as part of the London 2012 Festival I was very very excited to see what they had instore for me. The exhibition is only showing at the V&A for a short period from July 6 to July 29, so I quickly went last weekend before I missed out.
The exhibition is actually much smaller than I expected, being displayed in two small rooms by the side of the John Madejski Garden.
One of my favourite pieces of the exhibition was the a sculpture by Peter Pilotto and Francis Upritchard called the ‘Arch’ Figure, where the modela had beautiful brightly coloured jewels and glass beaded flowers – very fitting for summer.
The only actual fashion piece was a full body running suit by Giles Deacon and Jeremy Deller, a printed lycra body suit with cover stitch detail and cape.
Stephen Jones and Cerith Wyn Evans created an orbital light installation called the ‘Celestial Bonnet’, a piece that is a nod to the upcoming Olympics – five glowing rings of tiny LEDs orbiting what is apparently a headband.
Nicholas Kirkwood and Simon Periton’s piece the ‘Dissecting Waltz’ was one that I quite enjoyed, a revolving shoe chandelier! The effect of the chandelier spinning meant that you could see different glimpses, and light being shone on the shoe sculptures. I own a few pairs of shoes that I would quite like to display as a chandelier as they are so divine!
One piece that I wish I’d looked a little more carefully at was the piece by by Jonathan Saunders and Jess Flood-Paddock called ‘Life’. Apparently the piece came about over experimental sessions with one of Jonathan Saunders’s jumpers being thrown over a printmaking plate – the resulting shapes created a series of screenprints that they printed in beautiful bold colours.
The other collaborations include an audio track by Hussein Chalayan and Gavin Turk, and a digital work by Mary Katrantzou and Mark Titchner.
I thought the pieces would have a stronger “fashion” stamp on them, and I must say that my favourite piece, Peter Pilotto and Francis Upritchard Arch, was the only one that I thought I could clearly see a great fusion between fashion and art that I would love to have in my apartment!
(Giles Deacon and Jeremy Deller 2nd photo and Jonathan Saunders and Jess Flood-Paddock photo thanks to V&A)