Friday, September 20, 2013


Posted by Bethan Holt, Junior Fashion Editor at Large

Art has, as ever, played an important role in the Spring/ Summer collections so far; from Roksanda Ilincic's Brazilian neo-concretists to Gucci's Erté illustrations. But none have been quite so brazen as Mrs Prada who yesterday commissioned six artists from around the world to create huge murals for her show space and then transposed the essence of their work- "the multiplicity of guises that women assume  in the course of a day, or a lifetime"- onto skirts, dresses and coats to become part of her Spring collection. As Sarah Mower points out in her review for Vogue, it is quite impossible to see the scale and drama of Prada's project via the runway images alone. Very kindly, Prada sent through a comprehensive booklet with details of each artist and the work they produced for the show.

The essay which begins the booklet sets out the thinking behind this project which seems to have been born not just out of Prada's feminist message, but also from a wish to concentrate very much on the idea human-human interaction, not via technology from multiple locations but from being physically near one another. It's an idea which sort of goes against the grain of the way so many shows are now conceived, with maximum shareability and digital involvement at the forefront; "In many ways, this projects contradicts the prevailing cultural condition of disembodied, networked communication. There is a creative energy that can only result when everyone is physically working together in one space".

A final, fickle note before the tumble of gorgeous art begins. This might be street art taken right off the street and into a space where only select people could see it for real and then onto clothes which most of us will never afford. But, how incredible will this street art look when it finally becomes street style?







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