Dear Shaded Viewers & Diane,
Digital defiance was met with unanimous praise at last Saturday’s graduation show for Antwerpse Modeacademie, Antwerp’s primeval fashion school. As one of the longest running and most supreme shows hosted by this globally respected institution, it is no surprise that graduates of both the bachelor’s and master’s programs answered the call for this groundbreakingly nontraditional innovation challenge.
What typically is just digital documentation of a prototypical runway show metamorphosed into an entertaining fashion event more accessible to the public than ever before. With the audience viewing all students’ work through a computer screen, the potential strains of interpretation and perspective grew. Connections played out differently, more intensely, seen for example in the clever composition of four simultaneous video screens like those used in big festivals. Garments’ rhythm, frequency and superposition became layered in order to properly demonstrate their intended emotiveness. In considering the two main performative gestures familiar to a fashion audience member, i.e. flipping through fashion magazines v. sitting in observance of the procession of fashion’s latest “super mind”, it is clear to see that these students’ empowered reply to nature’s current challenges was derived from the latter.
The sheer amount of skilled labor required to ground and motivate this finale deserves an extra diploma: certified organizer of personal life events without jeopardizing the quality of the spectacle in a post-pandemic world.
In some ways, this evening may have been less intense than that of previous years’ shows. The format, however, required more concentration so as not to let any details fall by the wayside – evident in everything from inspirational research to experimental moulages.
BA classes in years 1, 2, and 3 presented, for example, banners modeling visual designs typically worn by skinny silhouettes. This composition simulated an activist ethic, an option provided by the show’s rare format that clearly offers routes for cooperative care. The viewer, be they a brain hunter, journalist or stylist, is thus given a new opportunity to follow their desires, to get closer to their favorite talents in new ways. Which collection stood out? We recommend you to find out all here.
Reinventing Master Magic
Joy of joys encapsulated the MA generation when a colony of established designers and prestigious fashion icons (including yours truly who blind dated Nico Verhaegen) personally advised and coached them. Presented at the renovated neo-Gothic Bourse in Antwerp, the Master Showcase presents the evolution of a generation that communicates without physicality and not in public. Indeed, we were all unmapped, much distanced; though still fellowshipping in the same venue while scrutinizing a new magic. Whether you were hiking in nature or lying on your sofa, Antwerp’s fashion apparition was a victory on a late ghostly Saturday night.
Marcelo Horacio Maquieira Piriz.
Photos © Courtesy of 2020 MA graduates from The Fashion Department Of The Royal Academy Of Fine Arts Antwerp