Friday, 15 October 2010

Friday Oct 15th: Future Beauty @ The Barbican

Last night, ROWDY and I were invited to The Barbican for the opening of the new exhibition "Future Beauty - 30 years of Japanese Fashion".
In a word - GO.
The garments from Issey Miyake, Rei Kawakubo, Yohji Yamamoto, Junya Watanabae, Jun Takahashi etc. comprise Europe's first exhibition of avant-garde Japanese fashion. Its all of those super tactile iconic pieces you wanted to grab off the pages of the Kyoto Costume Institute book............... brought to London. On the ground floor each incredible invention is concealed in an isolated pod, hidden behind screens of white gauze which adds to the anticipation. Upstairs the larger partitions are home to more looks from classic collections with the best being Issey Miyake's folded polygons printed flat - then drop into a garment when worn. So affirming for me to see. I make garments based on origami just because that's what I like doing - it never occurred to me that all of these historical wonders were derived from the same source. Its invigorated my enthusiasm for running riot with what I love most - weird materials and bizarre shapes.
I remember so well the bliss at discovering Jun Takahashi's first Undercover collections, in particular A/W 2000/1 when he covered the whole body top to toe in tartan complete with full face paint in line. These Melting Pot pieces are on display and commented on by Colin McDowell as "its half Chanel, half Vivienne Westwood" *SIDENOTE* I admit to loitering behind the man at a few intervals to overhear his running narrative to his friend along the way!
Congrats to The Barbican on another stellar fashion exhibition with perfect positioning and display of these prize and genius pieces. The added bonus is the extensive and equally well researched events calender. Go to their website to check out evening sessions hosted by the likes of Diane Pernet, Cassette Playa, Alex Box, Charlie Le Mindu, The Broken Hearts, Shelley Fox, Amy de la Haye, Noki, WAH Nails, Sharon Kinsella............... and me and ROWDY in discussion about fashion and performance on Oct 28th!

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