I need some inconsistency

An amalgamation of content: the aim not to politicise, but exercise. I'll think aloud about politics, technology, current news, as well as being a gay boy and what that really entails.

Wednesday, November 05, 2003

Armani - A Retrospective

The Royal Academy in London is showing an exhibition of Giorgio Armani's work. The exhibition has previously been shown at the NY Guggenheim, and will no doubt travel elsewhere from London. The exhibition is being shown around the back end of the Royal Academy meaning that one has to walk through Burlington Arcade; one of the most upmarket covered markets the world has ever seen, or Old Bond Street - as seen here. It's mighty posh and acts as an appropriate warm-up for the riches and wealth that are to follow.

The exhibition itself opens with a compilation of video shots from Armani catwalk shows. It's a great start because it really shows what the garments, mainly dresses of course, look like in the flesh. On a mannequin the clothes can look tired and lifeless, but on the models they come alive as something much more invigorating and stylish. The setting for the exhibition is interesting in a way, but also appearing slightly tired. The gallery is of course historic and beautiful, but the old buildings that house so many British Art Collections can often feel tired and in need of upkeep; there is a slight air of this here. The rooms are themed, so you'll start the exhibition by going into a brown themed room where many of the clothes - from years like 1988-94 are in earthy tones and the room is rather dull grey/brown colours.

Other rooms sport: silver slabs of stainless steel cladding the walls and ceiling of the airy white clothes room, to the purple deep pile carpets of the room housing the intricate asian inspired vest dresses of the 2001 season. Especially relevant to the 'rest of us' is the red carpet room where images of celebrities wearing Armani clothes to events accompany the actual pieces themselves just in front of you. This means that whilst you see a photo of Winona Ryder wearing an outfit, you can see the actual outfit right there, so close you can (could) touch it.
I feel like I'm detailing a club 'in the trance room they play...'

Overall it's an interesting exhibition showing a lot of Armani's work over the years. Some of the clothes could use a good ironing just to make the look less tired, but it's an insight into someone's style. You really notice how he LOVES his beadwork and the flamboyant clothes. Also, he must just KNOW women's breasts so well now - having designed for them for so many years.. Most of his designs have some sort of reference to breasts within them weather a shimmering fabric which hangs over the nipples or a dress made from sequins. He's familiar with the subject.

"Giorgio Armani is recognised as one of the most influential and iconic designers of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. He has been universally credited with both radically changing the rules of contemporary fashion and creating a timeless vision of modern dress. By removing excess ornament and translating traditional sportswear looks into business and evening wear, Armani has developed the contemporary casual style that defines the modern wardrobe."



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