Punk by agnès b., not Vivienne Westwood

Punk by agnès b., not Vivienne Westwood

Always a nice surprise to see exhibitions by fashion labels. The last one I visited was Chanel’s The Little Black Jacket and that was more than a year ago!

One would immediately associated punk with Vivienne Westwood and perhaps be pleasantly surprised by this agnès b. exhibition. In reality, agnès b. has been collaborating with various art mediums including photography for decades. I’ve always been fascinated by the agnès b. CINEMA in Hong Kong and I applaud their support for the arts community.

Agnès worked closely with photographer Sheila Rock to launch this travelling exhibition, which began in London and Paris in 2013 and is making its rounds across Asia this year. With a last name like Rock, it’s no wonder she is able to capture the unpretentious, raw and creative energy of the punk movement in her photographs.

Of course, there is a pop-up store and you may find me hanging out (permanently) there! Punk+: A Photo Exhibition by Sheila Rock is presented by agnès b and opens today at the Substation Gallery at 45 Armenian Street, Singapore 179936. The exhibition runs through 26 October and is open daily from 12 noon to 9 pm. Admission is free.

x Sybil

(Image from sagg)

Perfectly Paired: Where I See Fashion

If there is a website that perfectly mirrors our vision and inspiration, it’ll be Where I See Fashion, a tumblr created by Bianca Luini, a 22 year-old fashion design student studying at the Politecnico di Milano, Italy. Her tumblr, like ours, is about fashion and everything that inspires it, from art, design, nature to photography.

She started matching great works of fashion with images that she feels relate to them, either through form, texture, colour or concept, and she hasn’t stopped since. According to Bianca, “Sometimes a fashion picture reminds me instantly of something and I go look for it, sometimes it’s a random picture that makes me think of an outfit or editorial. Occasionally it happens that by chance I see two pictures near each other on my dashboard or in a random blog that perfectly go together.”

 

Details backstage at Christian Dior Haute Couture Spring 2012 | Terraced rice fields in Yunnan, China
Match #142<br />
Issey Miyake RTW Spring 2014 | Interior of the Caixa Forum art gallery in Madrid, Spain<br />
More matches here

Issey Miyake RTW Spring 2014 | Interior of the Caixa Forum art gallery in Madrid, Spain
GIF of the month - Match #134<br />
Rami Kadi Haute Couture Spring 2013 | Lava flow in Hawaii photographed by Johan Elzenga <br />
GIFed by What Do I Wear, more matches here

Kadi Haute Couture Spring 2013 | Lava flow in Hawaii photographed by Johan Elzenga
Match #130<br />
Yiqing Yin Haute Couture Fall 2013 | Mountain Lake by Michael Creese, 2014<br />
More matches here

Yiqing Yin Haute Couture Fall 2013 | Mountain Lake by Michael Creese, 2014
Match #139<br />
Yiqing Yin Haute Couture Fall 2012 | The black coast of Vik during heavy rainfall in Iceland by Stefan Forster<br />
More matches here

Yiqing Yin Haute Couture Fall 2012 | The black coast of Vik during heavy rainfall in Iceland by Stefan Forster
The works of fashion alone are beautiful but pairing them with an artwork or an image of a landscape provides an imagery that’s even more striking. It’s almost as if Bianca has discovered the story board behind each piece of design. In a remarkably straight forward manner, she has managed to create a direct dialogue between two works of art. No doubt this will be a website we return to again and again.
x Sybil
(Images from Where I See Fashion)

Iris Van herpen: Biopiracy

I am a big fan of Iris Van Herpen. I think she is one of the greatest visionaries alive and someone who truly blends art and fashion with ease.

As someone who also asks questions that becomes the spine of the collection, her question for her Biopiracy collection is
” In the recent past, patents on our genes have been purchased. Are we still the sole proprietor of our bodies?”

The collection now mixed with ready to wear and couture pieces is presented with artist Lawrence Malstaf to create a powerful visual that reminded me of Alexander McQueen’s theatrical presentations.

Models suspended in air tight plastics, fed with oxygen through a tube. Surreal and attention grabbing.

The mysterious sci-fi scene might just draw your attention away from the clothes had the clothes not been amazing. But they are just as beautifully crafted as ever.

This time, Van Herpen has included wearable pieces citing her move towards ready to wear. I love that the pieces, though wearable, are not mainstream, with her signature textures and 3D elements.

I think she is genius to start with couture and move to ready to wear without losing the essence of her brand. Looking forward to more.

Meanwhile, you have a great week ahead!

X Alex

(Images from Iris Van Herpen)

Nature reclaims its place: Viral by Jess Riva Cooper

At first glance, they look like feminine busts with floral print, very romanticism meets baroque. A closer look reveals many more layers than I’ve expected. Some even look rather ‘medusa’-like, unfortunately. However, it’s undeniable that the sculptures are visually striking and memorable.

The intricacy of the details is impressive. What looks like standard busts you see in art class are covered with flowers and leaves, printed or in relief. Overgrown and enfolding the busts, the force of nature and the stillness of porcelain provide a haunting imagery.

Created by Jess Riva Cooper, a ceramic artist and educator based in Toronto, this series was done during her artist residency at John Michael Kohler Arts Centre.

Cooper says, “In my art practice, I integrate colour, drawing and clay to create installation-based artwork. I investigate fallen economic and environmental climates in regions such as Detroit, Michigan, where houses have become feral, disappearing behind ivy, trees and Kudzu vines that were planted generations ago. In my sculptures, the world sprouts plant matter. Colour and form burst forth from quiet gardens and bring chaos to ordered spaces. Nature reclaims its place by creeping over structures. Wild floral growth subverts past states, creating the preternatural from this transformation.”

 

Viral Series (2013), Ceramic, glaze, decal, 11″ x 8.3″ x 18″

Happy Good friday!

x Sybil

(Images from Jess Riva Cooper)

Vilsbøl de Arce and more

Sorry for the lack of writing. It has been a busy season packing up and moving out of our label’s birthplace at PARCO, while attending a business plan writing workshop with some of the other fashion incubators. PARCO Singapore has officially closed and with that, it marks a closure and a new beginning. My personal life wise, I have been working on renovating my new place so it’s truly a case of moving forward to a new environment and beginning.

Thank you for everyone’s support so far. It has been such a privilege to get support through so many channels and to know so many talented creatives with an amazing drive. Just a quick heads-up to you that the alexandria chen label will be undergoing a change in direction. Do keep a look out on our new directives!

Anyway, on a different note, I happened to chance upon Vilsbøl de Arce today. They share the same philosophy of fashion being an art form and it is no wonder I just love them.

Founded in 2002, Vilsbøl de Arce creates avant-garde fashion with strong ties to art and performance. The designers, Prisca Vilsbøl and Pia de Arce, believes that fashion is art revolving around human form.

The duo often creates in collaboration with other artists, their talent shooting off in a myriad of creative expressions: modern dance, industrial design, jewellery, art installations, headpieces and uniforms. Artistic projects serve as the inspiration and framework for the Vilsbøl de Arce collections, and the resulting pieces are intricate fashion constructions with unconventional silhouettes and sculptural characteristics.

One of the last projects on their news page was the social knitting project ‘Kaffeslabberas’ involving designers/artists such as Henrik Vibskov, AIAIAI, Huskmitnavn, Mads Norgaard, CAN.


(Photo: Oliver Stalmans)

But this was the image that caught my eye, one from their earlier collection.

And one of my favorite artistes Leigh Lezark in VDA.

Check out their news site for more interesting information!

Keep in touch!

X Alex

(Images from Vilsbøl de Arce News and DazedDigital)

Bottled up: the lure of perfume bottles

What better way to brighten up your day than to wear a unique scent that expresses who you are and who you want to be? I confess I own more than six perfumes at any one time but never had I thought to get a perfume bottle that will also kick start my day in a lovely way.

I chanced upon Àlex Añó’s perfume bottles recently and have been lusting over them since. They are unusual and eccentric but at the same time, beautiful in an eerie, mystical way and I wish to have a series of all these gorgeous bottles.

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alphaarttrade_alex_p2

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The artist has been working with glass since 1992 and had participated in exhibitions at Galeria Montcada Tallers and l’Espai Vidre in Barcelona, la Galerie Workshop in Berlin and at the Galeria Art-o-nivo in Bruges. He specialized in Glass Grinding at the Massana art school in Barcelona and developed his craft at various institutions such as the Fundació Centre del Vidre in Barcelona, the “Cerfav” in Vannes-le-Châtel in France and La Granja Fundación Centro Nacional del Vidrio in Segovia.

In 2001, he perfected his technique at Franz Winkelkote’s workshop in Germany and since 2005, he has been designing and producing his own pieces. Currently, he shares his shop and studio in the Poble Espanyol with Katsue Kusumi, a ceramic artist. Àlex Añó’s works can be found on Alpha Art Trade, a website promoting artisans, artists and small manufacturers.

x Sybil

(Images from Alpha Art Trade)

Maiko Takeda: The Poetic Milliner

Logic + geometry + space form the common denominator in all Maiko Takeda pieces.

Tokyo born Maiko Takeda studied Jewellery Design BA(Hons) at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design and is currently doing a Masters in Millinery at the Royal College of Art. Her portfolio is extensive, having worked with Issey Miyake, Stephen Jones, Philip Treacy and Erickson Beamon. Juxtaposing environmental influences such as shadow, wind and gravity, her pieces are statically beautiful with a quiet voice that seems to narrate a story.

Here are some of her project pieces that are so poetic.


Formless (2012)

By Royal appointment (2012)

Some pieces from her past collection Cinematography:

But my favorites are her latest headpieces from her Collection- Atmospheric Reentry:

Somehow it reminded me of a mutated caterpillar with spikes. So eye-catchingly gorgeous.

It seems that Takeda has moved to a state of brighter colour palettes and a more extreme silhouette that perhaps indicate that her voice is getting louder, asking to be seen. Something she will definitely be if she keeps up her great work.

To see more, check out her site here.

Have a great week ahead & a Merry blessed Christmas.

 

X Alex
(All images from Maiko Takeda)

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