The Vancouver Art Gallery Presents: Fashion Fictions Art Party
The Vancouver Art Gallery Presents: Fashion Fictions Art Party
The Vancouver Art Gallery Presents: Fashion Fictions Featuring more than 50 national and international designers re-envisioning the future.
May 26th, 2023, VANCOUVER, BC // Traditional Coast Salish Lands including the Musqueam (xʷməθkʷəy̓əm), Squamish (Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw) and Tsleil-Waututh (səl̓ilw̓ətaʔɬ) Nations.
The Vancouver Art Gallery proudly presents: Fashion Fictions, an ambitious exhibition exploring experimental design practices that exist at the intersection of fashion and other modes of cultural production. Featuring more than 50 designers from around the world, the exhibition explores the influence of research-based, materially driven practices on the global fashion scene, while acknowledging the proliferation of creative practices that challenge the aesthetic, material and technological conventions of fashion.
The exhibition is divided into three thematic sections: Material Futures, which explores the relationship between technological and scientific innovations in material research to create fabrics; Aesthetic Prophesies, which highlights the fusion of cultural traditions with speculative creations and designers that push the boundaries of wearability with extreme fashion and; Responsible Visions, which explores the importance of sustainable discourse in fashion culture, with designers incorporating adaptive reuse, upcycling and digital design into their explorations.
“Fashion Fictions is a timely and urgent exploration of the intersection of design, art and personal agency, in the tradition of numerous Vancouver Art Gallery exhibitions that broaden the public’s understanding of visual culture,”
states Vancouver Art Gallery CEO & Director, Anthony Kiendl.
Fashion Fictions is more than mannequins and dresses, it’s an exploration of creativity drawing on cultural traditions, science fiction, technology and an interest in the natural world and sustainability. The curatorial approach favours the unexpected: established and celebrated brands are juxtaposed with emerging designers; couture is exhibited alongside streetwear and objects that blur the boundaries between design and contemporary art are peppered throughout. Contributing curator, Amber-Dawn Bear Robe, selected work by several Indigenous designers and artists addressing social and environmental issues through designs.
“Fashion Fictions has been many years in the making, and this timely exhibition reveals how fashion can be used to understand, describe and shape the world around us, as well as to envision modes of living very different than our own,”
said exhibition curator, Stephanie Rebick, the Gallery’s Director of Publishing and Content Strategy.
“I am thrilled for Indigenous fashion to be integrated into the larger conversation of global fashion with this exhibition,”
said Amber-Dawn Bear Robe, Contributing Curator.
“The Indigenous designers curated into the show represent such a tiny fraction of the extraordinary work being fashioned by Indigenous designers across Native North America. Many more fashion stories of the original designers of this land need to be shared.”
Throughout the exhibition, there are spotlights on fashion innovation and trends. Some highlights include Iris van Herpen’s couture gowns that integrate new technologies in unconventional ways; Craig Green’s alien and sculptural puffer looks for his Moncler Genius collections; the premiere of Montréal-based Ying Gao’s robotic garment 2 5 2 6; Alice Potts’ bio-design that creates crystal embellishments from human sweat; and Comme des Garçons’ radical reconfiguration of conventional silhouettes.
Fashion Fictions will be accompanied by a magazine-style publication released this summer and available online and in the Gallery Store. The exhibition will be activated through collaborations and special programs, including a creative research laboratory pop-up. This multipurpose lab, conceived and programmed by Material Matters from Emily Carr University of Art + Design, will function as a workshop, studio space and classroom showcasing current faculty and student work in process and will also serve as the site for programs, talks and design charrettes. This exhibition is a must-see for anyone interested in the future of fashion, design and cultural production.
Fashion Fictions will be on view at the Vancouver Art Gallery from May 27 to October 9, 2023.
Organized by the Vancouver Art Gallery and curated by Stephanie Rebick, Director of Publishing and Content Strategy; with contributing curators Amber-Dawn Bear Robe, Independent Curator and Indigenous Fashion Show Director, SWAIA; Siobhan McCracken Nixon, Assistant Curator; and curatorial advisor New Order of Fashion. Exhibition design by Measured Architecture.
FEATURED DESIGNERS AND ARTISTS
1017 ALYX 9SM, Barry Ace, adidas, Anta, Jason Baerg, Himikalas Pamela Baker, Balenciaga, Balmain, Catherine Blackburn, Comme des Garçons, Crocs, DRKSHDW, Orlando Dugi, Eytys, Ying Gao, Taskin Goec, Goomheo, Craig Green, Grounds, Infinited Fiber Company, Iris van Herpen, Shaya Ishaq, Jontay Kahm, Ronald van der Kemp, Helen Kirkum, Julia Koerner, Li-Ning, Chet Lo, Maison Margiela, Material Matters, Alexander McQueen, Issey Miyake, Moncler, Caroline Monnet, Tony Murray, nat-2™, New Balance, Nike, Off-White, Jamie Okuma, Wendy Owusu, Neri Oxman, Celeste Pedri-Spade, Mimi Plange, POST ARCHIVE FACTION (PAF), Alice Potts, Pyer Moss, Stina Randestad, Christopher Raxxy, Reebok, RTFKT, SCRY, Marine Serre, Alexandra Șipa, Skawennati, SOTA, Adrian Stimson, Studio PMS, Modern Synthesis, Maiko Takeda, The Fabricant, threeASFOUR, Angus Tsui, Undercover, Valentino Garavani, Vetements, Junya Watanabe, Anouk Wipprecht, Robert Wun, Scarlett Yang, Yimeng Yu, YUIMA NAKAZATO, among others.
ABOUT THE CURATOR
Stephanie Rebick is the Director of Publishing and Content Strategy at the Vancouver Art Gallery. She also frequently collaborates with Information Office, a Vancouver-based art book publisher and design practice. Stephanie has curated and co-curated numerous exhibitions including Fashion Fictions; Where do we go from here?; Modern in the Making: Post-War Craft and Design in British Columbia; Robert Rauschenberg 1965– 1980; Out of Sight; Guo Pei: Couture Beyond; Cabin Fever; MashUp: The Birth of Modern Culture; and Grand Hotel: Redesigning Modern Life. She has contributed to a number of publications including KRAZY! The Delirious World of Anime + Comics + Video Games + Art; Visceral Bodies; Unreal; Grand Hotel; and MashUp. Most recently she has edited volumes on the work of Jan Wade and Omer Arbel. Her curatorial interests include visual culture, new media, and the intersection of craft, design and contemporary art.
ABOUT THE GUEST CURATOR
Amber-Dawn Bear Robe (Siksika Nation) is Assistant Faculty of Native Art History in the Museum Studies department at the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA), Santa Fe, NM and Fashion Show Program Director for the Southwestern Association for Indian Arts (SWAIA), Santa Fe, NM. Bear Robe achieved an MA in American Indian Studies and a second MA in Art History, both from the University of Arizona. Regional Emmys were awarded to Bear Robe, in 2020 and 2021, as producer for two documentary short films featuring Indigenous fashion designers. She is an acting trustee for the Western States Arts Federation (WESTAF) board, CO, and the Wheelwright Museum board, NM, and sits on the curatorial committee for Vital Spaces, NM. She recently curated Art of Indigenous Fashion at MoCNA (2022–23) and is currently working as co-curator of an exhibition opening at The Autry in 2024. Bear Robe was the Indigenous fashion advisor for the Crystal Bridges exhibition Fashioning America: From Grit to Glamour (2022–23) and a contributing writer for the exhibition publication.
ABOUT VANCOUVER ART GALLERY
Founded in 1931, the Vancouver Art Gallery is recognized as one of North America’s most innovative visual arts institutions. The Gallery’s ground-breaking exhibitions, extensive public programs and emphasis on advancing scholarship all focus on historical and contemporary art from British Columbia and around the world. Special attention is given to the accomplishments of Indigenous artists, as well as to those of the Asia Pacific region—through the Institute of Asian Art founded in 2014. The Gallery’s exhibitions also explore the impact of images in the larger sphere of visual culture, design and architecture.
The Vancouver Art Gallery Is a charitable not-for-profit organization supported by its members, individual donors, corporate funders, foundations, the City of Vancouver, the Province of British Columbia through the BC Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts.
The Vancouver Art Gallery is situated on the ancestral and unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations, and is respectful of the Indigenous stewards of the land it occupies, whose rich cultures are fundamental to artistic life in Vancouver and to the work of the Gallery.
For further information, please visit THE VANCOUVER ART GALLERY