Although I believe Tim Walker to have expressed imagination and storytelling, shown greatly within his work, I couldn’t help feeling a slight déjà vu. The exhibition was extremely “same old” as motifs such as swans, humpty dumpty and models dressed in the style of Alice in Wonderland continued throughout.
The photography was extremely “pretty” but only a few images intrigued me. Nevertheless, the picture below of model Guinevere Van Seenus in a triplicate of herself wearing a gown by Jean Paul Gaultier evoked a nostalgic sense of eeriness as the model is watched over by two portraits.
The pieces I favoured most were the ones which weren't centred around fantasy, fairytale or surrealism, rather the more plain or symbolic photographs. Another piece I enjoyed featured the model Audrey Marnay; on top of the iconically Prada garments, Marney is pictured wearing a mechanical set of arms adorned with Pierrot style makeup. Although the mechanical arms seem to suggest they are busy working; the combination of mechanisms and childlike clown costumes are a great juxtaposition between childishness and the seriousness of a working mentality.
The installations throughout the exhibition did begin to have an effect on me, as I felt like I was walking further and further into a fairytale. Surrounded by boats embellished with gold shells and swans, dolls and even a wasp playing the cello, I began to understand what Walker was trying to convey with his photography (however much I feel the underlying themes of his work have been overused).
I feel this was more an exhibition for a fashion promotion student rather than a fashion design student, as more emphasis is put on the lighting and set design, making the garments hard to “analyse” in the way a fashion design student would. As the name of the exhibition would suggest, the focus was around the merging of sets, props and garments in order to tell a story.
"The Lanvin Dress"
The images above and below were amongst my favourite included in the exhibition, as I admire the way the clothes are presented. The Lanvin dress above intrigues me because of the structure and drapery involved, seemingly simple.
Below, the dusty pink garment worn by Stella Tennant is quite fanciful, with layers of sheer fabrics and pleats it is quite a decadent dress, made more for display than the comfort of the wearer.
Stella Tennant & Imogen Marnis Clarke -
Dior Haute Couture