La Gaité Lyrique, a former theatre turned digital art museum a few years ago, shows for the first time a fashion exhibition curated by Greek collective ATOPOS, meaning eccentric and unclassifiable. On-brand for this exhibition opening tonight.
Guests are invited to step on the catwalk and mingle with about 80 fashion freaks and ghosts – or to be more precise their ‘fashion envelope’. The sound of heavy steps, roar and gurgles makes you feel like they might move and poke you in the dark, but they are still and empty behind their masks. I couldn’t help thinking of the king of them all: Leigh Bowery.
But the show isn’t about the heydays of performance art – it is about avant garde fashion including Charlie Le Mindu’s A/W13 creatures or Walter Van Beirendonck’s ballet costumes, on stage last fall at Paris Opéra Garnier. Dissolving the barriers between costume and fashion design, some looks are truly spooky or spectacular like Kim Traeger’s Run-over Rabbit, but most of them are more fun than freaky. Which is just fine according to Vassilis Zidianakis, the curator of the show. In Greek monster refers to « Heras », an inexplicable form made understandable.
ARRRGH! questions our conceptions of beauty and identity. So go and embrace difference and ugliness. It’s official: fashion can make you a better human being. Fashion shows, freaky parties, talks, workshops, and performances to come…
www.gaite-lyrique.net, Paris – February 13 to April 7th
P.S. Don’t miss Bart Hess’ nightmarish immersive video in the small room.