Kicking off artsyF A S H I O NWeek here at Artsy Forager! Fashion and art have long been intertwined. For centuries, artists have, perhaps at times unwittingly, been the recorders of the history of fashion and style. It is in thanks to artwork that we can track what was worn by whom hundreds of years ago. Paintings weren’t just art, but were the fashion magazines and blogs of their day. For instance, thanks to Vermeer, we see a glimpse of the difference in the daily costume of the classes in a Mistress and Maid.
Today’s artists seem to have a bit more freedom to interpret instead of record. Fashion is such an integral part of our modern culture, it is no surprise that it still holds a fascination for contemporary artists. For some artists, the fashions themselves are worthy focal points. Denver artist Roxanne Rossi elevates a simple dress’s silhouette into an artistic statement, a sculptural fashion plate, clean but heavy in texture, it seems like it could come to life at any moment.
Sometimes the fashion media becomes a literal component to a piece of fashion-influenced art, such as in the collage work of Melbourne, Florida artist Derek Gores. His imagery has the composition of a Vogue magazine spread and the collaged photos, magazine, labels, etc give each piece a painterly depth.
Painter Kelly Reemtsen uses the constraints of mid-century era mindsets about fashion and juxtaposes them with garden tools and hardware, producing visual statements about the expectations placed on women, by themselves and the world at large.
Celebrating the female form, both physically and spiritually, Leigh Pennebaker’s wire sculptures reveal designs that are sensuous and soft, despite their industrial materials.
Like many fashion-forward artists, Megan Cosby began with an interest in fashion design, but decided she was more interested in the people themselves and what their style said about their personality, who they are, where they’ve been and where they are going.
And then there’s the smart and cheeky work of Sarah Ashley Longshore, at once playing homage and poking fun to our culture’s obsession with fashion. I’ve featured her Audrey Hepburn paintings several times on the blog, but she also has this fabulous series focused on fashion and pop culture.
More fashiony-artsy goodness to come this week! Stay tuned.
Featured image is Major Poontang by Sarah Ashley Longshore.