Art and fashion meld to create magic

Garments created from the notion of clothes as ‘second skin’, sculptural installations that talk about both the timelessness and materiality of life, a stop-motion animation film that captures a multi-media installation change daily – all these out-of-the-box creations were part of Khoj International Artists Association’s ‘Art & Fashion 2013’, a show that emerged out of a month long artists’ residency which explored the intersections and shared themes between art and fashion.

Over the last two years, Khoj has invited several artists and fashion practitioners to explore the synergies and crossovers between the two disciplines. Works developed in Khoj’s fashion residencies have looked at the material possibilities of
textile and fabric, created conversations around issues of copy and appropriation, addressed the idea of clothing as an extension of the body and discussed notions of clothing as a symbol and visual language. The participating artists were Bracia (a duo consisting of Aga Klepacka and Maciek Chorazy), Kallol Datta, Réka Gottlieb (Hungary), Anjana Kothamachu, Pallavi Paul and Elena Pereira (Netherlands/India).

Twenty seven-year-old Anjana Kothamachu, who graduated in Psychology from Mumbai University before studying Fine Arts, has created an installation called ‘The Phantasmagoric Menagerie’. She says, “My work involves translating the body’s relationship with desire into visual narrative and is woven from everyday rhythms, rituals, myths and stories. The work takes form as sculpture, drawing and video.” Created out of zari threads, salt crystals, paper and regular material found in home, the central piece looks like a female figure, and as Anjana says “symbolic of desire”.

Pallavi Paul, a student of Arts and Aesthetics, JNU, has developed ‘The Post-Humans Were Here’. She explains it thus: “I am playing with the concepts of time and material which are relevant to both fashion and art. It’s like a laboratory populated by traces of civilizations, a playful chaos encompassing a range of life forms like Bacteria, chemical skins, digital signals and plastic waste.” Hence Pallavi has created a sculptural work made out of prosthetic feet, costume gloves etc.

Elena Pereira, who comes from Netherlands, explaining about her work titled ‘Complexity of Remedies’ says, “I am interested in the concept of skin lightening - a concept of fashion I read about in India in 2010. I have used skins of flowers, vegetables and spices to create remedies that will be applied to garments which is like a second skin.” Periera, therefore, creates six gowns ‘injected’ with these home remedies as a reference to “what fabrics can be or do”.

Réka Gottlieb of Budapest says: “In the residency I would like to improve my previous project, ‘Buildable jewel family’ that was inspired by Hungarian basket weaving. Open worked and curved forms of baskets and different fibres’ thickness defined the character of the accessories. In Delhi, I want to research on Indian culture, inclusive of art, folk art and handicraft. I will mix Hungarian and Indian folk art elements to create an accessory never seen before.”

Comments (+)