ART IN FASHION: THE ETERNAL LOVE AFFAIR
Fashion and art have always had somewhat of a long-lasting, passionate relationship. One of the greatest things is seeing art portrayed in many ways through fashion. We have seen everything from catwalk shows and art exhibitions to boutique houses involving major labels in the diverse altitude of visual art. So, lets talk about these collaborations and remember some of the best of them;
Andy Warhol & Yves Saint Laurent
One was a hugely popular pop artist and the other, one of the most significant brands in fashion. The 1960’s was a big year for fashion and art merging. Pop art was at its peak. The artists would adopt all aspects of popular culture and rebel against what was seen as traditional art and what it should be. They sought to take images from their everyday lives and not just what they were educationally taught to, making this into a worldwide expressive art movement. Fashion designers were also seen to be looking further afield by finding inspirations for design in the popular culture of the times.
Saint Laurent’s pop art collection was seen gracing the runway in 1965 with his famous ‘The Mondrian’ collection which was a tribute to all modernistic artists at that time with one of the major influences being the paintings of Piet Mondrian.
Salvador Dali & Elsa Schiaparelli
The passion between art and fashion is by no means a new occurrence. Within two world wars, imaginative pioneer Elsa Schiaparelli designed some of her best known works. Classifying herself as an artist and her designs as art, she became one of the biggest fashion figures of her time. She was heavily influenced by surrealist artists and her biggest inspiration was the genius Salvador Dali, who inspired her to create her famous 1937 piece, The Lobster Dress. She came up with the design after seeing Dali’s artwork the ´Lobster Phone´, giving her the inspiration for the iconic dress which debuted in her autumn/winter 1937 collection.
Daniel Buren & Louis Vuitton Spring Summer 2013
In 2012 came the collaboration between two iconic design names. French conceptual artist, Daniel Buren and legendary designer Marc Jacobs joined forces with the French fashion house, Louis Vuitton. With only a few weeks before the show was due to take place, Daniel Buren was invited to have a meeting by Marc Jacobs. who asked Buren if he would be willing to design the next show for Louis Vuitton. Panicking about the time scale of only two weeks, Buren knew that this was an amazing opportunity to which he agreed. Jacobs gave him complete freedom over all the design aspects. When the show took place, there were jaws dropping at first sight as no-one could believe their eyes. The floor of the Lourve´s courtyard was set out in a bright white and yellow checkerboard pattern. Then, the models came cascading down the four escalators in pairs wearing 1960’s inspired dresses and skirts with contrasting colours and patterns, creating somewhat of an optical illusion. This initiated one of the most unforgettable collaborations of art and fashion to date. Buren then went on to design the related advertising campaigns and window frontages for the collection.
Paco Rabanne´s ‘12 Unwearable Dresses in Contemporary Materials’ takes us to a different kind of project which is more or less an architectural collaboration as it was originally designed by an architect who later became a world known couture designer. In 1966, Paco Rabanne became the first designer to involve metals, plastics, cardboard and rubber in his collection as he showcased the groundbreaking ’12 unwearable dresses in contemporary materials’. The 60´s was time for Rabanne to pay homage to his former design background and in doing so, he structured each dress he designed to proportionately fit each model to perfection.
Damien Hirst & Alexander McQueen Collaboration 2013
The brand of Alexander McQueen celebrated its 10th year of the iconic skull scarf by collaborating with artist Damien Hirst to produce 30 uniquely designed scarves with an influence from Hirst’s ´Entomology´ series. The collection was presented in a short film shot by fashion photographer Sølve Sundsbø. As McQueen and Hirst shared the same passion for skulls as well as two of the darkest minds in design,this made them perfectly suited to collaborate together.
As it stands, the relationship between fashion and art has never been stronger. Putting art with fashion can be the most beautiful thing ever witnessed as it enables you to live and wear the creations on a daily basis.
Article: Poppy Lowdon
Photography: Each Respective Designer / Registered Name