Saturday, September 14, 2013

FUTURE BEAUTY: 30 Years of Japanese Fashion at The Seattle Art Museum (SAM)

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Written by Colleen Tsoukalas (Treasure Seeker Colleen)

We were so lucky to attend the Future Beauty Community Night Out, Thursday, Sept. 5th at the Seattle Art Museum!  From 6-9, we met models from The Trash Fashion Group, who travelled from floor to floor showcasing their haute trash fashion designs, and invited people of all ages to interact and appreciate the intricately recycled and repurposed clothing and accessories.There was music by SAM Performs: dj100proof and lots of opportunities to get your fashion forward pictures taken and to design your own jewelry. You could make your own creation or see one in process by artist Tariqa Waters.  There was break dancing by Vicious Puppies Crew, SAM style and fashion SAM films, print making, 'highly opinionated tours, a fabulous fashion show by the New York Fashion Academy and so much more to celebrate the 30 Years of Japanese Fashion Exhibit. Art Galleries and Museums really come alive when their collections are enhanced with new interpretations and public collaborations.  Yes, there should be lots of quiet time for reflection and interruption free experiences but, in my opinion, each new exhibit should start and end with a celebration.

Photos by Luke the Photographer and Colleen Tsoukalas
Did you know we went to Japan Fashion Week once upon a time?

The 100 pieces, courtesy of the Kyoto Costume Institute and created by the Japanese Masters, as I like to call them, are so beautifully made and are such thought provoking statements that I am totally in awe when I see each one,  and I am even more impressed when some are laid out flat, construction genius revealed and framed as separate works of art.  Rei Kawakubo, who started Comme des Garcons, challenges the tall, slim model type so frequently seen on the runway.  Her pieces scream sculpture, design, one of a kind and think outside of the box. I love her great cape/coat collection for Aug/Winter 2013. Unfortunately, no photographs of the exhibit were allowed, so you really must see the show or buy the book to see Junya Watanabe's "Techno Couture" and Issey Miyake's gorgeous creations, as well as the rest included in this exhibit.

A room was devoted to "Cool Japan" and showed street style in Shibuya and Harajuku.  Cosplay, Manga and Lolita/Gothic Lolita styles as well as Sailor Moon were featured.  Jeweles, masks, bangles and sparkles dazzled the eye.

Throughout the entire exhibit, collection catalogues, framed collection invitations and runway videos made it seem like we were in Japan, perhaps at Tokyo Fashion Week or in any of the cities where fashion is all important and even the smallest places have costume museums. 

There is so much to see of the excellent designs of the past thirty years as well as much to look forward to from the up and coming Japanese designers.  I think the world should see FUTURE BEAUTY and hope it continues on a world wide tour.  Sugoi!

One of The Trash Fashion Group showcasing treasures from trash:
a fantastic orange wig hat, matching orange flower bouquet and
stylized message board spring wedding or bridesmaid's dress

 A nod to the Japanese Cos dress style, including umbrella, fancy
hair and boots

Yellow and orange opposites, emphasis on wrap design skirts,
sweater collars and not on shoes

Noh white face and gothic cape jacket and breeches - black and
white provide dramatic contrast

Elegant Kimono sleeved piece, wrapped and pleated, detailed hair design

Hooped dress that takes its own shape as the model walks,
matching red and white head-wrap

Tiered and hooped black polka dotted white skirt with plaid top
and black and white short sleeved, collared overblouse, bowed headband

The dramatic runway staircase of the Seattle Art Museum 
formal black gown, sets the tone

 The book of the entire exhibit

Generations of fabulous Japanese Designers in the exhibit book

Poster announcement for New York Fashion Academy's Runway Show
A very creative and confident interpretation of Japanese designs

Delicate, shimmery Jazz Age, body skimming dress
Seams opened, it could be laid flat to show its exquisite pattern and 
construction - another work of art

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