Ana Carolina Rodarte ︎

Image: Reproduction.  

Wake up, gurrl! The “pão com ovo” recipe loses its strength on the food chain of fashion.

How the pandemic 2020 has generated a new look at the empirical novelty of the industry through an experimental demand.

The social distancing period recommended as a preventive measure against coronavirus, made possible an aesthetic experiment on an unprecedented scale: what happens when people do not physically find glances and external spaces and all their fashion performance is conditioned to the two dimensions of a screen? Some possibilities were pointed out in the virtual edition of London Fashion Week, but, on social media, independent designers also left something to be desired in their hypotheses.  There, in that virtual window, where a filter can take care of your look of the day, the composition of the clothes is less conditioned to requirements linked to use - comfort, elasticity, resistance, trim - and more to those linked to aesthetics.  If there is no touch, everything can be put on.

Who has proven this, is the Russian designer and photographer Maya Golyshkina, who started to use packaging from chips, plastic dolls, plastic bottles and fruits as raw materials for the looks she posts on her Instagram (@_themaily_).  In May, she recreated autumn-winter 2020 looks for The Face in two-dimensional paper representations.  The material was used again in August;  this time, in an editorial produced in collaboration with Marc Jacobs.

In April, in Brazil, graphic artists Rita Davis, Filipe Lampejo and João Emediato created the Mascorona project (@ mas.corona), challenging people from different areas and profiles to create masks from unconventional materials and objects.  Until the closing of this edition, the profile had 234 publications.  In an interview with the Amado Room, Davis said that “some [masks] manifest sensations, desires and anxieties present during quarantine.  Others are from super-deep research (...).  But all are somehow a channel for an abstraction from reality.  (...) locked at home, crazy things happen, unexpected objects end up glued to our faces. ”  The profile will be deactivated at the end of social distance in the country.

But the experiments are not limited to the materiality of the clothes and accessories.  French designer Michaela Stark - who has collaborated with Beyoncé on the video for “Apesh *t” and “Black is King” - has gained notoriety in recent months for rethinking modeling parameters and considering lingerie as sculptures.  In his work, Stark makes the pieces emphasize the characteristics of the female body that traditional lingerie, under the spotlight of patriarchy, seek to hide, a work that reminds us of Georgina Godley in the 80s. For those who are on London soil, Michaela's pieces will be shown at the “Inside Me” exhibition at Gillian Jason Gallery.

We still need time to understand how the distance and the intensified relationship with the screen affected the fashion imagery.  However, although some brands and events insist on a rescue from pre-pandemic conditions, works by independent creators already show us some notes of the changes that are coming.  In addition to the need for protection and the taste for comfort, there is the emergence of a grotesque imagery, not in the pejorative sense of the term, but in the Bakhtian concept of what is in a “process of becoming.”  The immateriality of a world represented on screens liquefies some modesty and references, which, for a future that is becoming detached from colonial standards, may be very welcome.  We stay on hold.