It's Not Even Over...and I Am Done
Yesterday afternoon while having coffee with another blogger from out of town, I kept thinking that I had three more events to attend before the day was over. Since last week, when NYFW began, my life has been more of a blur than a fully lived experience. I am two blog posts behind, no weekend bibliography and no post this Monday and that creates an underlying sense of letting myself and others down. In that moment I decided that after this very pleasant interlude I was just going home. NYFW is not even over and yes I am done.
Although exciting being invited to both see shows and participate in them, what came to me as I sat for a moment yesterday, was that the entire reason I began my project, which was to explore and research my love of clothes, my curiousity about the designers themselves and the process of garment making, is no longer fulfilled through this institution we call Fashion Week. When you are running from one show to the next, when clothes are passing before you in about 5 minutes and models are running offstage to change and go to the next show, there is no opportunity to really look at and touch the clothes or have a conversation with a designer about their inspiration and the logic behind what they decided to create. It made me remember how in the first year I started, before I was known enough to get invites, how I went to the market shows where I could indeed meet and talk with the designers and touch and feel and really see their clothes.
I have been thinking we are in a time where the institutions that we have in place are no longer able to do the job our current social revolution driven by technology needs them to do. They no longer can fulfill their most important functions. Fashion Week in the traditional way we have structured it seems to be one of them. For me the most important function of the show is to show the clothes, express the designer's passion and the further elucidation of a brand story. With the advent of “season less collections", “see now/buy now” and customization it is entirely possible to have a show anytime during the year and have it become a fully lived and appreciated experience. Social media is the conduit between brands and their buyers and even now fashion shows are experienced more through those channels as brands are live streaming at the same time they are having a show.
There are enough weeks in between the current calendar of fashion months where nothing surprising or new is happening that a few shows or presentations every few weeks that can be savored would indeed be a real “luxury”. Intimate presentations where one could engage in conversation with the designer as well as others that may appreciate the work would be a far better way to create the passion, pleasure and desire that animates ones wish for a certain garment. I usually become quite animated when there is a great deal of creative energy around me. When I stopped for a moment to have a real human experience I felt the exhaustion I usually feel that comes from an energy that is frenetic, directionless and obsessive. This drains, not fuels creativity.
So here is a moment during fashion week that truly took my breath away. This collaboration by Chloe X Halle and Benjamin Shine, was part of the 29Room Exhibition by Refinery29 and entitled “Harmony”. It celebrates the relationship of sisters and women’s connectivity, The music can only be heard through headphones so you get the contemplative view. Benjamin Shine is the same artist who collaborated with Maison Martin Margiela (John Galliano) for the Spring 2017 (see photo below) Collection.
To see and learn more about Benjamin Shine and his work with textiles watch this video.