Collection: Info File: Week 2

Week 2: Costume Design

by Libby Tsoi
Tags: alexander mcqueen, costume, design, hussein chalayan, katherine hamnett, michael clark, stevie stewart
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RESEARCH: COSTUME DESIGN

Having gone to the Michael Clark Company show the other day, I thought it was appropriate to begin with Michael Clark and his costume designer Stevie Stewart. Formerly one half of the innovative and influential fashion design label Bodymap, Stewart now works with top creative names in fashion, music, film and advertising as a costume, set and production designer and a fashion stylist. She began collaborating with Michael Clark in 1984, creating memorable costumes for many of his productions. I love the simplicity of the body conscious costumes, and I can feel a very strong relevance with the current choreography project I'm doing as we have to work with a similar body suit.

Everyone in the fashion world knows of Alexander McQueen and his famous painting-the-dress show. McQueen is one of the most well-known fashion designers in the world, with award such as four British Designer of the Year awards (1996, 1997, 2001 and 2003), as well as the CFDA's International Designer of the Year award in 2003. I chose to look at this piece as my partner and I are thinking of doing a similar thing to our dancer's body by smearing paint onto her body and face. However, the outcome won't be as aesthetically pleasing as the McQueen dress! 

Katharine Hamnett is an English fashion designer best known for her political t-shirts and her ethical business philosophy. Hamnett was interesting to look at as she incorporate bold type into her work, reminding me of a manifesto project I did for graphics during the diagnostic period. I will not be incorporating type into this project, but as reference, Hamnett is very intriguing and has a lot of ethical interest for me.

Hussein Chalayan's wacky but astounding designs had to be put in this bit of research. His garments do have a costume-esque feel to them as you wouldn't wear them anywhere besides the catwalk (unless you're Lady Gaga!). Chalayan is a British/Turkish Cypriot fashion designer. He has won the British Designer of the Year twice (in 1999 and 2000) and was awarded the MBE in 2006. His innovative and crazy designs are always so well done and thought-through, and the construction is always perfect.

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