…from Retro to Repro…

 Just the other day, i came across a german newspaper called “Kunstzeitung”. On the front page was this article of Karlheinz Schmid. The title was “Der Tanz ums Goldene Kalb” and what I am going to do here, is reproduce this article a bit the same way fashion reproduces art.

Well, the article starts with a small observation, or maybe comparison on Moschino , who dresses women this summer with newspaper-print suits like Galliano had done back in 2000 for Christian Dior. This was Galliano’s attempt to deconstruct the elegant traditions of the haute couture, even the fact that “paper dress” had been an often trend back in the late 1960s..!

moschino ss2014
Moschino_SS2014
 John Galliano's S/S 2000
John Galliano_SS2000

The observations continue with Chanel, and how interesting is to see  this brand recalling the Pantone Guides for its SS2014 collection. Using the basic tool of a designer is a simple and secure proposal against the needs of a global, constantly consuming market of shops and Internet sales. But it is even more interesting to answer Miuccia Prada’s question on whether you see feminism on her collection inspired by Muralists, with another question. What can a Diego Rivera possibly do on a dress…??

chanel_ss2014
Chanel_SS2014
prada-rtw-ss2014-diego rivera
Prada_SS2014

But apart from designers, magazine editorials also get inspired by famous painters to set and present new fashion products through their pages. There is no question here that fashion has made a lot of money using ideas that derive directly from art and that sometimes this practise has led to more harm than “advertising”.

So, what about the other side? The customers! Mainly ladies of our high-obviously-society attending partys and  wearing garments with Vasarely and Turrell printed on them, making them feel so important as if they are attending a Golden Calf ceremony. As Mr Schmid correct stretches,the Industry of Fashion is very well aware of their clients’ weaknesses and the spirit of time .

What once seemed unique, like the pattern of a postcard sent from the other side of the world, nowadays you can print it at the next corner shop. Or should we say Re-print it…so it is no longer an issue of Retro rather than Repro..!

Queen of the Reprints is considered to be Mary Katrantzou ,who two years ago used sunset and labyrinth pics for her garments. Still, for her 2014 collection she used pictograms which are basically icons that convey their meaning through their pictorial resemblance to a physical object. Among those pictograms where also military signs which makes you wonder whether this is a reaction to the common spirit of our time, or an unconventional fashion rising from all our anxieties, or is a war on its way, or is it all just that simple…That this is the natural evolution of things with no second thoughts and conspiracies.

Mary Katrantzou A/W 2014_ellizoe
Mary Katrantzou A/W 2014

So my “inspiration” article closes with the saying of fashion being the most groundless form of all arts. That is one perspective of this issue, one could say. Another perspective would be, how easily customers are being manipulated by fashion industry and seek no unique and original ideas. Is it because we are feeling safe with reproduction and why is that..?..perhaps it is sciolism that supports our insecurities..

source: “Der Tanz ums Goldene Kalb” by Karlheinz Schmid

-by Elli Z_e

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