There was an epic queue for the Bloody Gray presentation in the Portico Rooms, presumably due to overenthusiastic distribution of the very attractive invites by Yasmina Hamaidia, I did the old go away and come back trick. Like they told me to. And walked in with no queue at all 20 minutes later. As can become the case when things claim to be ground breaking, there was a thin line between interesting and juvenile that, to my mind, some of the designers on show at Bloody Gray landed the wrong side of. Some of that ground has been broken many times before. But then far be it from me to discourage people from trying to be interesting of course, and interesting it definitely was.
First to catch my eye in the main space were the creepy powder-wigged moving statues of Jayne Pierson’s live art and digital display. They had white tights on over their shoes. And they looked as if they were going to crawl out of a Regency dolls house in the night and strangle me. Excellent.
Jayne Pierson’s slow moving models.
Jane Bowler, a fan of sustainable fashion and user of innovative inexpensive plastics, combined tessellating coloured squares in both her exciting dresses and shoes.
I liked Tom Van Der Borght’s theatrical setup with strip lights (obviously to make his models difficult to photograph); his garishly painted figures strike an entertaining line between tribal intimidation and colourful clownish clubland cuteness. The outfits themselves artfully combined obfuscating shapes, colour splatters and horses. It was an unusual, colourful and highly bizarre.
Dutch designer (among other things) Bas Kosters had filled his The Rebellious Shadow room with zombified fashion warriors, a horse headed man and such insightful slogans as YES NO and WHY. Why indeed Bas, definitely in the interesting/juvenile territory… but then what should we expect from the man who’s known for his leggings and dresses printed with photographs of penises.
I’m pretty sure this is Barbara Alan, presumably explaining to someone why she has chosen to display her collection on pink posti-it notes. Her literature that came in the goody bag has one of my favourite phrases of ridiculous fashion waffle I’ve ever read: ‘Breaking from tradition by using innovation to give everything a uniqueness and an individuality.’ My GCSE art students couldn’t do better.
A/W 2013, Barbara Alan, Bas Kosters, Bloody Gray, Gareth A Hopkins, Jane Bowler, Jayne Pierson, London Fashion Week, Portico Rooms, review, Sylwia Szyszka, The Rebellious Shadow, Tom Van Der Borght, yasmina hamaidia
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