29.9.13

After numerous explanations and intersections of fashion and art, two designers claim that they do not think fashion is a form of art.


Flipping back several pages in the fashion-art book, we can recall a number of famous collaborations between the field of fashion and art - freshly ingrained in mind is probably what Louis Vuitton has pulled off with Yayoi Kusama, and the house's latest collaboration with Indonesian artist, Eko Nugroho. The yearly exhibition in the Metropolitan Museum of Art New York that focuses on a designer and his/her retrospective journey in fashion also confirms how closely linked the two fields are. That is without forgetting to mention numerous other fashion-related exhibitions, as well as artistic attempts called Haute Couture collections that are worked on two times every year.

However, the notion of fashion can be equal to art undeniably feels a bit far-fetched when we compare what happens on the magnificent stage of fashion in the a la mode capitals to what happens around us. Fashion is decoded in the form of clothing garbs. Fashion retailers eye for as much profit as possible instead of quality and style. People are flocking to adopt the newest trends at the lowest price - an action that for me, arguably feels right and wrong at the same time. Art itself, attempts to define the abstract ideas, which come both utterly cheap and unbelievably expensive, depends on what kind of art articles we are talking about.

So much confusion in each field - both art and fashion, because of the different aspects and qualities applied to value the creation. Rising British designer J.W. Anderson whose part of the company is now owned by LVMH sounds his opinion about whether his creation is an art. In the interview with Dazed Digital, he mentions that, "I will never see fashion as an art form. I see it as more mechanical. You cannot compare an artist to a designer; I think it’s a very different proposition. Both are commerce now, from what they used to be, but fashion is reduced, art doesn’t necessarily happen that way. It doesn’t get reduced, it exceeds in value. I wouldn’t want it be an artist, but I like the idea that there is a shelf life to it - you have to harness this moment."

A more thought-provoking statement came from Japanese "artistic" designer Yohji Yamamoto in his interview with Sleek, saying that he hates the word fashion. "I hate fashion. Or the word fashion, which sounds colourful, extravagant, expensive and gorgeous." In the interview Yamamoto also considered that what he is making is not art, although people often believe so. For him, fashion is about the business of craftsmanship, a side of which is going to disappear soon.

Witnessing how fast trend comes and go, how ephemeral a creation in fashion industry is, maybe it is simply logical to say that fashion is not art. Still, a part of it can very much be appreciated like art - something that moves and influences us in a meaningful way. I personally enjoy how the interchange between the two worlds take place in an intersection that is busy with both the brilliant minds and hype seekers.


image is from vogue.com

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