On art + fashion

In this rapidly accelerating technological world, I find myself drawn even more to original art pieces. In my countless trips to museums in my area and whenever I travel, it is amazing to witness what human beings have the potential to create. Art never ceases to inspire me. I’ve grown to appreciate various forms of art, such as paintings, sculpture, and architecture. For me, fashion is one of my favorite art forms because of its unique ability to be worn.

I believe that fashion is an art form. Especially with regards to haute couture, fashion designers function as artists who have a vision to put together a garment, using various textiles, colors and other materials like buttons and zippers. Stylists and those with an eye for fashion then complete the look with accessories, with almost endless possibilities—belts, scarves, shoes, pins, hats, etc. The most delightful part is getting to see the finished look strut down the runway. In everyday life, people get to select pieces to wear and style them according to their own lifestyle and personal style.

In the fashion world, the relationship between fashion and art is not well defined. Some fashion designers do not regard fashion to be art. Part of the discussion is that if a piece can be reproduced, then it is not art. However, if it’s a bespoke piece then it may be considered art. Whether fashion is art or not, art can most definitely inspire. For one fashion designer, Raf Simons: art it is part of his daily life: “There was no day that I’m not looking at art. I can’t really explain it, because it’s so in my system…it’s natural to connect it to what I do.” In his first haute couture show for Dior, Raf used inspiration from Jeff Koons’ “Flower Puppy” and decorated the runway space completely in flowers to display his designs. In this way, the effect turned out to be a powerful melding of fashion and art.

It is important to note that both art and fashion stem from a creative point of origin—someone designed and put together the pieces. Things did not just show up haphazardly. Humans made art forms, including clothes & accessories. This origin of creativity may serve to unite art and fashion, as they both seek to create something coming directly from humans and made for humans. Creativity is an important aspect of the imago dei, which means that humans were created in the image of God, their Creator. Thus, I’m not referring to any artificial intelligence produced works, only those with a distinct human origin.

In my most recent visit to the Blanton Museum of Art, I wore an Alice + Olivia colorful, mixed print dress adorned with florals, butterflies and leopard. I felt instantly fashionable and artsy. I also felt more strangely connected to the art around me, quite literally! For instance, the collection Marie Watt: SKY DANCES LIGHT consisted of aluminum-like light cone forms hanging from the ceiling, and you could brush against it as you walked by it. It was the first time that I had been able to make contact with an art form at a museum. I found that the movement from my silk dress synced with the movement from the art pieces, which made for a brief magical moment.