© Jasmine Reif
© Jasmine Reif
8 March 2018
by Niamh Tuft
Each month one member of the ADF team selects a design object that has caught their attention. This month our Fashion Programme Manager, Niamh Tuft, has selected the Roberts | Wood fashion showcase installation in collaboration with artist Marie Valognes, specially commissioned during London Fashion Week, February 2018.
During London Fashion Week in February fashion designer Katie Roberts-Wood chose a very different way of showcasing her collection to the usual runway show. Opting instead to spend three days creating a body of work with a series of creative collaborators: first an immersive experience with creative direction collective Crowns and Owls, then a live sculptural installation with artist and photographer Marie Valognes and finally a live shoot with photographer Bex Day.
The result was a rich collaboration which invited new perspectives on her work. Hosted by Sarabande Foundation (Lee Alexander McQueen's bequest to future generations of creatives) where Roberts | Wood currently has a studio. It's almost no surprise that surrounded by artists, jewellers and printmakers, she chose to take a multi-disciplinary approach to showing her work.
By the time I reached Haggerston, it felt a long way from the hectic hub of London Fashion Week. There's a serenity that gave time for more consideration and attention. Somewhere between a fashion presentation and an open studio, watching Katie Roberts-Wood and Marie Valognes quietly and deftly working was mesmerizing.
I was already drawn to Marie's work, who often makes sculpture in response to fashion. Her portfolio is a witty but very precise take on form and texture, my favourites are a sculpture of a Rick Owens dress from a loo roll and an iconic pink Comme des Garcon piece modelled in pink rubber gloves. Her take on Celine seems to be a frozen banana and a piece of duct tape but it's remarkably accurate. I've always been a bit fascinated by how artists regard fashion - here there is an absurdity but also a very careful attention to shape, texture, colour and composition. In response to Roberts | Wood, Marie is working at a larger scale; white paper and black balloons take the form of a piece from the Autumn Winter 18 collection. Outside of the bright lights of the catwalk, its a very potent reminder that creativity sometimes works best with limited means, and a little duct tape can go a long way.
Look at the full Roberts | Wood AW18 collection here