BREAK­ING BAR­RI­ERS

Fash­ion has al­ways had a love af­fair with art. Amy Yasmine cracks down on the re­la­tion­ships, and how de­sign­ers and artists are tak­ing them to a whole new level.

Harper’s Bazaar (Malaysia) - - The News -

Afew months ago in May, the world bore wit­ness to fash­ion’s most glit­ter­ing night— the Metropoli­tan Mu­seum of Art’s an­nual Cos­tume In­sti­tute Gala in New York. Among the star-stud­ded crowd was ac­tress Sarah Jes­sica Parker, who made a sur­pris­ing choice to ar­rive in an all-white Monse suit, in­spired by the broad­way pro­duc­tion Hamil­ton. Shocks and gasps fol­lowed, as the ac­tress known for her out­landish gowns opted for some­thing a lit­tle more dressed down. Leave it to SJP to school us on the per­fect amal­ga­ma­tion of old vs. new, and fash­ion vs. art. “Fer­nando [Gar­cia, of Monse] in­tro­duced us to these em­bel­lish­ment artists in Brook­lyn called Le Stu­dio An­thost, who took the idea of old-fash­ioned cou­ture em­broi­dery and, with tech­nol­ogy, ap­plied it to fab­ri­ca­tions us­ing paint,” says the ac­tress. Un­con­ven­tional? Per­haps. In­ge­nious? Most def­i­nitely. This cer­tainly counts for a new ris­ing sen­ti­ment—one that is con­stantly push­ing the bound­aries be­tween art and fash­ion.

THE NEW LUX­URY

Noth­ing quite sur­prises you when a USD150,000 bag is your ev­ery­day go-to ac­ces­sory. Un­less, it’s been turned into a mas­ter­piece wor­thy of a mu­seum. See: the new per­son­al­i­sa­tion that has since kicked mono­grammed ini­tials out of the game. “In or­der to make lux­u­ri­ous ac­ces­sories even more unique, buy­ers are el­e­vat­ing their pre­cious pieces into unique works of art,” says Alisa Kov­tunova, who trans­forms five-fig­ure Her­mès bags into wear­able pieces through her New York­based com­pany, ArtBuro. “It gives the buyer an op­por­tu­nity to express them­selves a lit­tle bit more, and the piece it­self be­comes much more than just an ex­pen­sive ac­ces­sory,” Kov­tunova en­thuses. With lux­ury items be­com­ing more ac­ces­si­ble to the masses, it’s no won­der de­sign­ers are shift­ing to­wards a more ar­ti­sanal ap­proach. Con­sider Dolce & Gab­bana’s metic­u­lously hand­painted Si­cil­ian Car­retto sun­glasses, or on a more con­tem­po­rary (read: shock­ing) level, Gucci’s colour­ful graf­fiti col­lec­tion for Au­tumn/Win­ter ’16, pro­duced by artist Guc­ciGhost, in lieu of the brand’s iconic logo.

BLURRED LINES

Ever since Louis Vuit­ton played cu­ra­tor to its ‘Se­ries 3’ ex­hi­bi­tion tour in 2015, it’s been a con­tin­u­ous state of role re­ver­sal be­tween de­sign­ers and artists. Artists spurred cre­ative vi­sions in col­lab­o­ra­tive col­lec­tions (see: Marc Quinn for Dior, and MCM x To­bias Re­hberger) or de­sign­ers served as cu­ra­tors— such is the case at Gucci, Louis Vuit­ton, and Sal­va­tore Fer­rag­amo. Like an ex­panded uni­verse of a mai­son, ex­hi­bi­tions have given visi­tors a sneak peek into the in­ner work­ings of a fash­ion la­bel—a 360-de­gree ex­pe­ri­ence, if you will. In­versely, artists have been clam­our­ing to align them­selves with like­minded de­sign houses; fur­ther ex­pand­ing their artis­tic reper­toire and adding a touch of un­con­ven­tion­al­ism. As Alessan­dro Michele says, “Two things to­gether are good. Di­ver­sity al­ways pro­duces some­thing in­ter­est­ing.”

Cus­tomised Guc­ciGhost jacket from Gucci Au­tumn/Win­ter ’16

Per­son­alised hand-painted Her­mès Birkin and Dior Lady Dior bag

A re-cre­ation of Alessan­dro Michele’s favourite paint­ing, fea­tured at Gucci’s ‘No Longer/Not Yet’ in 2015

The Sex and the City ac­tress at The Met Gala this year

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