Exhibition

Hidden Treasures – Jewelry from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

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If it happens to be in Dubai these days, you definitely need to visit d3 (Dubai Design District) where an exquisite jewelry exhibition is on display till April 13th.

Hidden Treasures: Jewelry from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, an exhibition gathering more than 300 priceless items of jewelry from Saudi Arabia, from Bedouin styles to pieces belonging to the royal family, was organized by the French jewelry design school L’Ecole Van Cleef & Arpels.

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The collection belongs to Art of Heritage group from Riyadh, established 30 years ago as a cultural trust aiming to promote research and study around Saudi culture, arts and crafts. Art of Heritage sets a foundation for a future museum bringing together artworks and objects that reflect the history and lifestyle of various Saudi tribes and regions since the 19th century.

Pramod Kumar KG, the curator of Hidden Treasures: Jewelry from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, highlights the complexity and diversity of the pieces on display, as being relevant not only for the Arab identity but for the multiple influences Arabs were exposed to – African, Egyptian, Celtic, Austrian, Indian etc.

From the works of the pilgrims that came to Makkah and stayed on and created different crafts … to the goods and influences from the trade routes that passed through, to the newer styles and creations by designers in the Kingdom, the Art of Heritage Museum, when it opens, will be one of a kind,” says Kumar KG (read more on Arab News)

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The display conceived for the exhibition is also fascinating – the choice of black faceless mannequins not only highlights the shape and style of jewelry pieces showcased, but also creates special atmosphere. With the styling concept, Hidden Treasures: Jewelry from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia brings in the bold mysterious presences recalling various generations of women that wore these accessories – the hidden beauties of the Arab world.

Images source: thenational.ae

Vogue x Saudi Arabia

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Vogue Italia teamed up with Rubaiyat, the faimous Saudi luxury fashion retailer, to support the young talents of Saudia Arabia fashion scene. The result was a great event held during 3 days (20th-22nd of April) in various locations of city of Jeddah – Boulevard, Rubaiyat Department Store, Park Hayatt hotel.

10 Saudi young fashion designers – the finalists of the Vogue contest, had the opportunity to showcase their creations in front of the Vogue team and to meet iconic figures such as Franca Sozzani, Alberta Ferretti, Silvia Venturini Fendi.

Finally there was not one, but four designers, selected by Vogue Italia as result of Saudi Talent Scouting. They will be further promoted by Vogue Italia, who provides them with a valuable support at the beginning of their career. Nora Aldamer of Chador, Mariam Bin Mahfouz and Nouf Hakeem of Haal Inc. will have the opportunity to participate at Milano Moda Donna, while Alaa Balkhy (Fyunka) will start a collaboration with Carpisa.

For me, as I attended for the first time a fashion event in Jeddah, it was a good opportunity to get a real picture of the Saudi fashion design scene and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. There were plenty of passionate youngsters, fresh graduates that showed maturity and professionalism in their creative approach. Therefore Vogue Experience Jeddah will go on.

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Selection of young Saudi fashion designers work, as displayed at Rubaiyat Department Store during the Vogue event, Saudi Talent Scouting in Jeddah.

Cottweiler

BEN COTTRELL AND MATTHEW DAINTY, COLLECTIVELY KNOW AS COTTWEILER, ARE CONCEPT LED DESIGNERS WHO RESPOND INSTINCTIVELY TO THEIR SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT. FORWARD THINKING DESIGN AND MANUFACTURING IS COMBINED WITH AN ASPIRATIONAL QUALITY TO FORM A RELEVANT, MENSWEAR LABEL.

IN ADDITION TO PRODUCING SEASONAL COLLECTIONS STOCKED WORLDWIDE, COTTWEILER PRODUCE FILMS AND INSTALLATIONS, WHICH HAVE BEEN SHOWCASED AT THE INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ARTS, LONDON, HAUS DER KUNST, MUNICH AND ALISON JACQUES GALLERY, LONDON.

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Primarily, Cottweiler caught my attention through their innovative approach to athletic gear. Since sportswear became a major orientation in fashionable streetwear of the moment, there is a constant need to redefine it. Design duo Matt Dainty and Ben Cottrell definitely know how to do that. Throughout seasons, with every new Cottweiler collection, their style becomes more and more refined, achieving a luxurious touch.

I appreciate their taste for art installations instead the traditional catwalk shows, their interest for technical vs. natural fabrics, their carefully constructed details and stunning fashion silhouettes. Cotweiler’s Fall 15 menswear collection, shown at Alison Jacques Gallery, London, mixing the sport casual vibe with stylish and weird display (see pictures), deserves a special consideration. A smart combination of sport elements, workwear style, sophisticated details and hi-tech fabrics, I guess this is what should be labeled as “modern sportswear”. While workwear inspiration always proved to be a successful formula (from jeans and Doc Martens to aprons and overalls), Cottweiler leads it to another level – look at those white boots, amazing!

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images via showstudio.com

A Few Grams of Red, Yellow, Blue

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Alex Mirutziu in collaboration with Elias Merino – Scotopolitic Objects #2 for five performers and electroacoustic impromptu/

In the opening of  “A few grams of red, yellow, blue. New Romanian Art”  exhibition,  Center for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle Warsaw ( March 10-June 8 2014)/

Performers: from left to right: Maxim Liulca, Diana Marincu, Razvan Sadean, Flaviu Rogojan, Radu Comsa/ Photo © CCA Warsaw

read more

Not A Toy

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Toronto’s Design Exchange museum is displaying an expensive exhibition dedicated to toys. Titled ‘This Is Not A Toy‘, the exhibition is curated by John Wee Tom, Sara Nickelson and Pharrell Williams, and it runs till May 19th, 2014.

This Is Not A Toy‘ features an exciting collection of artworks and “conceptual toys” created by famous artists including KAWS, Takashi Murakami, Coarse, Huck Gee and Frank Kozik. The value of the toys displayed range from $2 to $2 million. Did you know that Pharell Williams is a passionate toy collector? Many of these pieces are part of his personal collection.

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Faceless Exhibition

The Faceless Exhibition, currently on show in Wien, brings together various works of contemporary artists and fashion designers, in which faces are hidden, transformed or masked. For artist Bogomir Doringer, curator of the exhibition together with Brigitte Felderer from the University of Applied Arts Vienna, the exhibition was chiefly inspired by the sociopolitical consequences of 9/11. As the value of facial identifiability has risen, abstracted forms and representations of faces have become increasingly common in artistic production.

Picking a relevant concept in the contemporary culture  and tracing connections between art and fashion, this exhibition offers an intriguing point of view. As the curator noted, ‘Like in times past, we are attracted to wearing masks as a form of protection or camouflage, as a prop, or just for entertainment.’

FACELESS part I, on view from July 4 to September 1, 2013, at freiraum quartier21 INTERNATIONAL/MuseumsQuartier Wien, contains the works of : Marina Abramović, Marc Bijl, Thorsten Brinkmann, Ondrej Brody & Kristofer Paetau, Asger Carlsen, Nezaket Ekici, Shahram Entekhabi, Caron Geary aka FERAL is KINKY, David Haines, Ren Hang, Sabi van Hemert, Ursula Hübner, Damier Johnson aka REBEL YUTHS, Brian Kenny, Ute Klein, Nienke Klunder, Manu Luksch, Zachari Logan, Maison Martin Margiela, Slava Mogutin, Veljko Onjin, Bernd Oppl, Tanja Ostojić , Gareth Pugh, Eva-Maria Raab, Ana Rajcevic, Tarron Ruiz-Avila, Viktor & Rolf, Daphne Rosenthal, Mustafa Sabbagh, Olivier de Sagazan, Daniel Sannwald for WOODKID, Frank Schallmaier, Hester Scheurwater, Jan Stradtmann, Sergei Sviatchenko, Jun Takahashi for UNDERCOVER, Marc Turlan, Levi van Veluw, Philippe Vogelenzang & Majid Karrouch, Addie Wagenknecht & Stefan Hechenberger, Katsuya Kamo for Junya Watanabe COMME des GARÇONS, Bernhard Willhelm.

Opening hours: Tuesday through Sunday, 13:00 to 19:00
Free admission
Location: freiraum quartier21 INTERNATIONAL
MuseumsQuartier Wien, Museumsplatz 1, A-1070 Vienna

Images source: facelessexhibition.net

Mannequin: Corps de la Mode

Mannequin: Corps de la Mode, a fashion exhibition organized by Musée Galliera, is currently on show and runs until May 19 2013 at Les Docks (Cité de la Mode et du Design), 34, quai d’Austerlitz, Paris 13e.

Fred’s fashion house model, 1897

Jacques Heim, Fall/Winter 1951, by Henry Clarke

Raphael, S/S 1951, Interfoto Venice

Kate Moss, photographed by Corinne Day, 1990

Kristen McMenamy, photographed by Juergen Teller, 1996

As the body is the genuine core of fashion, the models (whether we’re talking about tailor’s dummies or real women) play a central role in the evolution of fashion. In fact, it’s impossible to understand the evolution of fashion through the decades without considering the bodies that supported, materialized and inspired the most creative designs. The Parisian exhibition focuses exactly on this theme, that’s why I consider it an outstanding fashion statement. The history of fashion records a significant evolution from the tailor dummies designed for various clients, to in-house models (who also evolved from anonymous girls to designer’s muses), to the cover girls and contemporary superstars. Mannequin: Corps de la Mode attempts to catch the essential visual & conceptual shifts in fashion imagery: the elegant figure of the 50s, the powerful, sporty look in the 80s, the heroin chic icons of the 90s, nowadays photoshoped look and the appetite for surgical enhancement.

The exhibition curator – Sylvie Lécallier, an expert on fashion photography at the Galliera Museum in Paris, puts together relevant images, from anonymous photographers to the artists who challenged the role of fashion photography: Horst P. Horst, Helmut Newton, Steven Meisel, Nick Knight, Corinne Day, Juergen Teller etc. The display of  three-dimensional mannequins or mannequin variations (such as Margiela’s  dummy inspired couture-pieces) is mixed with the images of living models (Twiggy, Kate Moss, Kristen McMenamy, etc.). Finally, the fashioned body represents a subtle dialogue between the organic and inorganic, between what’s natural given and culturally constructed.