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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

Future of Fashion

Orleans House Gallery , 21st June - 24th August 2008

Written by Sascha N. Rashof

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Noah & The Whale may be the most obvious example of ‘morning music’ I could ever hope to find. Folk with the lyrical style of The Postal Service is a combination that seriously rivals corn flakes and ice cold milk in my opinion.

Tracks like ‘Rocks and Daggers’ and ‘Shape of My Heart’ are so damn catchy I reckon I could actually sing along to them in my sleep. I’ve been a fan of these tracks since the demos I heard them in their demo forms, site no rx but these new recordings seem to have a lot more life to them. With added vocals and different instruments used they take on a whole new, this more exciting, character.

The high point of the album has to be ‘5 Years Time’ though. It’s the recollection of a joyous daydream considering what a relationship could be like 5 years in the future. It springs along at the tempo of giddiness, with horns that are reminiscent of Beirut, making it sound like a declaration.

The album definitely isn’t all quite so memorable however, as many of the songs seem to merge into one. Towards the end of the album the pace slows and the songs seem to have less about them. They can pull off this style of songwriting as they show on tracks like ‘Give A Little Love’, but the last two tracks do come across being as being tucked away as if they were filler.

The Government, ailment along with the G8, has waged war on food wastage, and we’ve got to all confess to a bit of complicity here. Alright, so as a political task force the G8 is as effective as the East Dulwich Women’s Institute, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do our bit, if for no other reason than we could save £420 a year (enough to save eight acres of rainforest).

Make a shopping list – okay, it sounds a bit anal and motherly, but it’ll help to stop those nasty impulse buys cluttering up your cupboards.

Use your freezer – effective rotating of your freezer will allow you to store food for a few extra days, helping to use everything before it goes brown/grey/green/other bad food colours…

Long-life foods – where possible buy things that won’t go off in a couple of days, then you’re more likely to get round to cooking with it before it makes a break for the bin.

Share and share alike – if you have leftovers you know you can’t possibly use, ask if a friend, relative or neighbour might like them – better yet, invite them over!

Oh, and though I’m never one to promote big business, M&S has pledged to power six of their Simply Food shops with renewable energy from a machine that turns food waste into electricity. Wouldn’t necessarily suggest you try this one at home…

For more info click on lovefoodhatewaste.

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When half a band becomes half of a new band a comparison will be inevitable made. So who am I to buck the trend? In the interest of research I decided to play a track by Televised Crimewave formed with two alumni of Black Wire (Daniel Wilson and Tom Greatorex) and two fresh faces (Rob Bootle and Bat Neck, seek who I was informed by a ‘source’ is so called because he has a tattoo of a bat on his neck) at the same time as a Black Wire track. One thing is obvious immediately; Televised Crimewave are pretty much Black Wire but they lack in the guitar department.

Not only do Televised Crimewave owe a debt to Black Wire, health but with a mission to pursue old (but not forgotten) passions, they also owe a bit of pocket change to punk. Most notably on Fire and Flowers, with a hey ho-esque chorus that sounds very distinctly familiar. Hmm, I wonder where they got that from.

But tributes and similarities aside, televised Crimewave’s songs have a rousing sense of urgency. It’s a bit like music to have electric shock therapy to, if that was ever necessary. I like to say it’s psychedelic garage pop at its best, but it’s not. Televised Crimewave are pushing a sound that is rather tired and they seem to be holding back, they never quite reach the crescendo their music deserves.

When Dolly the Sheep was cloned it was hailed as a medical marvel. When Black Wire were cloned the results aren’t so marvellous. Perhaps Televised Crimewave could change their name to Dolly. Although, then they may get parallels drawn to that lovely lady who sings about working crap jobs. Televised Crimewave are worth a listen, but for those not sobbing into our pillows about Black Wire demise, a listen is all you need.

The ‘Future of Fashion’ exhibition located on the beautiful premises of the Orleans House Gallery in Twickenham is a showcase of the work from British students and recent graduates across the pathways of fashion design, ampoule illustration, illness photography, diagnosis textiles and accessories. The pieces – most of them on sale – selected by co-curators Mark de Novellis and Caroline Alexander, come from courses of various levels within colleges and universities all around the country, including the University of the Arts London, Edinburgh College of Art, Kingston and Southampton Solent University.

The display is divided into three parts, starting off with ‘Tradition’ and ‘Innovation & Creativity’ on the ground floor, leading to the open gallery upstairs showcasing ‘Diversity’. Whereas ‘Tradition’ focuses on the British (fashion) heritage – such as Savile Row tailoring and textile craft – being subverted and therefore reinvigorated, ‘Innovation & Creativity’ explores the more conceptual and experimental approaches which British fashion has become internationally recognised for. ‘Diversity’ finally investigates the global influences impacting upon the industry – whether these come from inside Britain itself because of its rich cultural mix or from outside, through the many European and international students who come to train here, each bringing their unique identity to the country.

One highlight of the display is Kimberly Patterson’s piece ‘Identity Theft – A Corporate Assault’ from BA Fashion, Kingston: An all-white ruffle minidress made of energy-efficient Tyvek® fabric by DuPontTM inspired by Douglas Coupland’s novel Generation X and the idea of the ‘McJob‘. With each pattern piece being a scaled-up company logo, her work examines questions of globalisation, consumer and corporate culture as well as sustainability.

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Faye Bamber from Fashion Design & Technology at the London College of Fashion produced interesting work for her 2nd-year project ‘Industrial Engineering & Sculptural Fashion’. Her architectural, Hussein Chalayan type pieces were inspired by research from the Museum of Science & Industry, the Royal Armouries and the National Railway Museum. Although her two showcased dresses made of aluminium sheeting and wire make great exhibits, the real treasure troves are her accompanying design development books in which she experimented with cog mechanisms, paper and wire maquettes, Grecian-style pleating, asymmetrical shapes and weaving techniques.

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Despite the ‘Tradition’ section showcasing a couple of pieces that were too – you guessed it – Vivienne Westwood and ‘Diversity’ featuring a few less strong works, some of them a bit out-of-place and/or lacking additional info and accompanying material, ‘Future of Fashion’ makes for a worthwhile trip down to Twickenham and proves that real artefacts which can be examined three-dimensionally, touched, yes even smelled are a much more valuable experience than the digital proposition used by other fashion colleges in Central London.

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