There is a new meteor shower for the evening of May 23rd coming from a group of stars named after the giraffe; the ancient name was the camelopardis constellation – this of course uses lots of imagination as the stars are very faint.   But a giraffe dancing with shooting stars is a good image and fascinating especially that this appearance is very rare.  As I couldn’t stay up to see it, I watched my own giraffe. Meteors can appear any time and anywhere and you also need a clear night, but my giraffe – my personal camel leopard – with his long neck and spotted body sitting on my desk makes me always think of clear skies, always.

Prix Pictet, started only six years ago, has become a force in bringing attention to environmental challenges.  This year the theme is about consumption and the thoughtless exploitation of our world.  Creating demand where there is no need; destroying the environment for no good reason.  The winner is Michael Schmidt and I was happy to go to London to assist at the award ceremony and see the  exhibition of the finalists at the Victoria & Albert museum. This monumental series by Schmidt is called Lebensmittel (food stuff) and was made between 2006 and 2010. It is a deep investigation into the way we feed ourselves; food and nutrition security;  and following fast food chains from the farm to the table.
A strong statement to remind the consumer where their food comes from.

Chinese photographer Hong Hao kept a daily visual diary for over 12 years, scanning every item he has owned for his personal consumption.  Here, the accumulated results in this impressive  photo collage.

 According to Charles James, fashion is not a social but a sensual distinction. ”The mind combines with the body to exploit the senses”.  The exhibition at the MEP shows the complexity of the architectural structure of his designs, and how modern his work was then, and still is.

James thought of himself as a “ sartorial engineer”.  I first heard of him in the early 80’s when Anna Piaggi did a story about him for Vanity.  Of course James was American and his greatest popularity was in the earlier 20th century so for me, the designers of France and Italy dominated the press .To now find out James was greatly admired by Dior and perhaps influenced Dior’s “New Look”, only confirms for me that the great talents always know what each other does.

When it comes to architectural structures in clothing and design, Roberto Capucci immediately comes to the mind. Recently honored in America at the Philadelphia Museum of Art with a retrospective, he was the high priest of form and material.  Here, ball gowns designed by Capucci in 1959.

This is a stunning and very structured shape by Roberto Capucci. It was from his collection presented in Paris for Spring Summer 1966, where geometry married experimentation in materials beyond anything we had seen before.  It is quite a piece, photographed by Amedeo Volpe, as seen in the book, Roberto Capucci: Timeless Creativity.

Poiret is known for wonderful decorative clothes, and creating the cocoon silhouette.  He was extravagant in all fields. I didn’t know his love of architecture and approach to structure until I saw his home. Poiret commissioned it to be built by Mallet Stevens in 1921 and it was finished in 1925.  Sadly, Poiret was compelled to sell it in the 30’s.

Posted on: Sunday, May 25th, 2014

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