Sunday, May 9, 2010

The SYDnificance

I have returned from Sydney. The week was spent attending RAFW shows, finding interesting nooks, places and people in Sydney, observing what Sydney had to offer me in the way of fashion and further ways of showing/communicating fashion. Constantly throughout the whole experience everything we saw and did triggered the voice in my head to think 'how will I appropriately show and display my work?' I actually didn't take that many photos throughout the week, but here are some of the ones I did take with some verbal unravellings in this post:

Observing Australian Fashion Week taught me many things. From viewing a number of shows it is easy to see that they are more about production than content. When exiting upon a Fashion Show people talked amongst themselves about the look of the show. They commented on the effect of extraneous trivialities like hair, music and shoes. I don't blame them and I myself found this unavoidable when watching a show. During the parades I found myself distracted from the actual clothes by the phenomena of its staging, and I kept on having to remind myself to look at the garments. I never left a show feeling significantly impacted by the way the garments used space or the body in communication. I understand that every form of fashion has its own place in the spectrum with appropriateness to its content and intention. However I strongly question weather I would ever want to be a part of a catwalk fashion show in any way, ever. Though I do completely value garments being viewed and experienced on a fleshy body, maybe this is the participants body though? How does this body have a dynamic, challenging and unassuming relationship with the space around it through fashion?

On Tuesday I went to a talk by Philip Fimmano, assistant to Li Edelkoort of TREND UNION. I had seen Mr. Fimmano talk at on of the Victoria Design Festivals in (I think) 2005, so it was interesting to see how the trend presentations that they compile and develop had changed in five years. Their image prenetations make use of a 'double page' - a split screen combining two images, which I really find effective. Fimmano talked of 'iconographic research' which is something I think a lot of people, including myself, do in development and the power of these images as a standpoint when words become to oversewn. He also kept of referring to how many people who work for TREND UNION have a heightened sense of intuition and how really trend forecasting is based on creative intuition. Fimmano said that, "everything we do is an application of intuition and reason. We follow intuition to its end and then put this into practice with pragmatics." This is similar to how we develop our studio work. Research, feelings and intuition - and now is the time to start being pragmatic, testing and editing. I struggle with intuition and knowing it.

After this presentation on Tuesday I had a kick around UTS and hit up their library, which has a lot more books that RMIT, it was pretty awesome. On a wall of a building next to the library was this circular window with clothes inside behind the glass. Nice use of space, transparency, looking and garments.

On Wednesday night we went to the Romance was Born show at Sydney Uni. The most thrilling thing about the show was the shenanigans of sneaking in. They had one of those inflatable halogen lights above the catwalk, as it was held in a dark hall. I like these.

We went to the Art Gallery of NSW and walked though Hyde Park on the way home. Here a some pictures of a street performer blowing huge bubbles. They were beautiful and transparent.

On Thursday morning we went to Gaffa Gallery, a gallery for emerging and intependent artists, with studio spaces available upstairs. When we visited, they were holding the fourth series of thier MAKE exhibtion - showing artworks by artists who have worked for Object Galley - another gallery in Sydney. In the exhibit were works by a man named Stephen Goddard, who from what I can gather from internet stalking is a photographer/graphic designer. He has a consultancy business - Stephen Goddard Design. His two works at Gaffa were effective and beautiful.

He uses the shape of text as an overlay and also to take the form of a cutting line of a garment layer. I like the use of a cut associated with questioning words, as cutting is a form of asking questions and unveiling.

Friday arvo we went to the Centre for Contemporary Photography. This pic is by Mark Greenland.

At the begining of the week I was really hating the idea of going to sydney and having one less week to do work. But I think it has done some good, in having some time of less intensity and slight separateness from studio work. I know the next draft of my skeleton/proposal will be different as a result of the things I have seen.

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