Videos Category Archives

Behind the Scenes: ‘Washed Up’ at Selfridge’s Project Ocean

I’m sure there are many fans of the 1987 film Mannequin reading this.  Or if not fans, then at least a population familiar with the quintessentially 1980s comedy starring Kim Cattrall as an Ancient Egyptian who travels forward in time to become a store mannequin in New York City. A twentieth century take on Pygmalion, with plenty of camp, musical montages and shoulder pads.  If …

Shoe Factories and Lost Opportunities

Though I don’t generally think of myself as a shoe fetishist, I do have a soft spot in my heart for Fluevogs. In their latest e-newsletter was a video of a Fluevog shoe being made (I must add the disclaimer that though I truly love Fluevogs, I truly hate the style in this particular vignette): I have loved seeing the process of how things are …

Spotlight on Dress as Performing Object: Trisha Brown’s Floor of the Forest

The relationship between  fashion and fine art is a topic of much debate, and one that faces fashion curators and writers perpetually.  The questions of whether fashion is art, and conversely whether contemporary art itself is a manifestation of fashion in the larger sense, are indeed complex, and often tiresome for those such as myself who find more interest in the dialogue than in finding …

Caught on Film: A 1930s Hollywood Premiere

When one is used to looking at vintage film stills, it’s easy to forget that these actors moved and interacted with one another, and that their clothing moved too. This soundless clip of an unknown film premiere provides a glimpse behind the glamor, suggesting the lives behind the characters and of their off-screen wardrobes. It includes Humphrey Bogart, Norma Shearer, Dick Powell, Joan Blondell, Jeanette …

Symposium Recap: Authenticity in Yale’s “Urban Catwalk”

It was excitement and ultimate delight that I attended (and presented at) Yale’s “The Urban Catwalk” conference this past weekend. Though ostensibly the theme was street fashion, as with most conferences, this topic was expounded upon by a wide range of scholars from vastly different fields (performance studies, French history, literature, communications, etc.). More even than “street” or even “public space,” the concepts of “authenticity” …

The Triangle Factory Fire and the Living Issue of Labor

In the current climate of rampant, high-profile antisemitism (Galiano, Gibson, etc.), war on unions (Wisconsin), and the attack of women’s health rights, the centennial anniversary of the tragic Triangle Factory fire of 1911 seems eerily apropos. The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire was a tragic culmination of long standing inadequate fire and safety codes, and American willful ignorance of the exploitation of the immigrant / Jewish …

Elizabeth Taylor: Tribute to a Supernova

* I recently overheard someone complaining about the overuse of the word ‘iconic,’ especially as it related to fashion and style. Elizabeth Taylor’s passing has caused me to reflect somewhat both on what it means to be an icon and the notion of stardom. I think, Elizabeth Taylor was a rare case where those two words, ‘star’ and ‘icon’ on their own each seem inadequate …

Exhibition Techniques: The Wig-Masters

Julien d’Ys Creates Heads and Wigs for The Model as Muse After attending a recent visit to a museum exhibition on fashion, I became fascinated with the rather involved process of creating wigs for fashion installations. The Powerhouse Museum in Australia provides this short blog entry giving a quick discussion of the skillful yet simple creations of curator, Lindie Ward and textile conservator, Suzanne Chee. …

Caught on Film: “1967 Astro-Fashion” Vs. Mugler & Gaga

This video, taken in West Germany of Mod’s in 1967 depicts space-age fashion from the year 2000. Confused? Watch the video to see what it’s all about. I love this for both its ties to fantasy, futuristic space travel, as well as European design aesthetics. I can’t help by be reminded of the big names of fashion in the 1960s, such as Pierre Cardin and …

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