Every now and then, Hue stumbles onto the vexing question of fashion versus art. Like, is Alexander McQueen’s jellyfish ensemble art? Or Yves Saint Laurent’s Mondrian dress? What if something is just really exceptionally crafted? Is exacting, painstaking craft itself an art form? Hue goes back and forth on this.
Balenciaga suit, 1948: Fabulous, but is it the "A" word?
Recently, Hue found itself on the opposite side of the question when we took a little field trip to the Museum of Modern Art. Here we noticed that the artists (we’re confident that they’re artists because we found them in an art museum) were trying to horn in on fashion’s act.
We took lots of very bad pictures. Here’s one:
Hue thinks a Rootstein mannequin would do wonders for this, er, sculpture.
We liked Andrea Zittel’s “Lavender Corduroy Personal Panel” (above) from 1995. On the MoMA’s website, Zittel explains, “I think the whole point of my work is to pay more attention to using things in a conscious way and observing your reactions to objects.” I know, right?
It's hard to go shopping when you have eggshells stuck all over your bag.
We wandered upstairs. There we encountered “Maria” (above), a piece from 1966 by Belgian artist (that word again!) Marcel Broodthaers (1924-1976). The didactic label told us that Broodthaers incorporated humble found objects in direct conversation with Pop Art. But we think it’s a nice dress anyway.
Then there’s this fellow:
Hue doesn't have to tell you this is by German conceptual artist Joseph Beuys (1921-1986), do we?
The artist created this suit out of felt, a fabric of which we happen to be very fond. We found the didactic label puzzling: “Felt can provide protection and warmth as well as detachment and isolation.” Detachment and isolation? We can’t think of anything that would make us want to cuddle up more. We were happy to find out that Beuys modeled this piece on his own suits. We wanted to take this one down from its austere, cold place on the wall, put it on, and walk away, thus becoming, perhaps, a piece of performance art.
On the other hand, maybe we’ll just buy something bespoke. We want a good fit, and, frankly, we’re starting to suspect these categories are just in our heads.