Fascination / Imagination
The fashion and art worlds converge in this exhibition, fresh from Paris Fashion Week. By Li Meng de Bakker
When it comes to the creative world, it seems China is now being seen as an emerging giant on pretty much every front. This is true in both art – where the Mainland has already become the scene for modern work – and in fashion, where a raft of talent is starting to make global waves. At the recent Paris Fashion Week, an exhibition exploring the convergent worlds of fashion and art was held at the Pavillon Vendôme, under the theme of Fascination / Imagination. Featuring a group of distinguished Chinese artists and curated by in-demand Hong Kong-based Singaporean designer, makeup artist, stylist and everywhere-man Alvin Goh, the exhibition showed works ranging from fashion photography to experimental light installations and more abstract toys and products. This fortnight, the exhibition comes to K11 – and we've picked out some of the highlight artists who are exhibiting their work.
One of China's new generation of rising stars in fashion design, Simon Gao's avant-garde pieces have been applauded for their original, urban and fresh approach. The Beijing designer, who has been named Designer of the Year by K11, uses unconventional materials to craft an otherworldly collection for the K11 event. His pieces are at times fluid, at times even jarring – but they never cease to captivate.
Pencil on paper is enough for Meng Baishen to make a statement. Take the artist's Recollect the Trace of Wind series, for example. The works, charged with political statements, superimpose a communist star, Chinese characters and music manuscript on pencil shading so uniform it looks metallic and three-dimensional. His distinctive pencil-style is also the technique behind the deceptively simple works, using primary shapes, which are on display in Hong Kong.
Futuristic, daring and bold are just some of the words with which to describe virtuoso Beijing fashion photographer, Charles Guo. His work has graced the pages of all the major fashion magazines and his Tumblr (charlesguo.tumblr.com) is a flurry of stunning images that speak for themselves. His monochrome images, with alien-like shading and detail, are among the selected works on show from this world-class photographer.
With the combined artistic vision of four Chinese artists and their expertise in various mediums, the installations created by LuxuryLogico lie somewhere between pop and digital art. Known for utilising old recycled light bulbs in their larger-than-life structures, the group has crafted a kaleidoscopic light installation that meshes collages of everyday brands' logos and references. It's one of the more interactive elements that you can experience at the exhibition.
Using computers and dancers to create spatial art visuals is definitely on the unusual side. And that's what Cocho Take, a conceptual art ensemble headed up by Huang Heng-Wei and Pan Bo-Ling, specialises in. Using computer graphics, the group transfers live performances of dance into monochrome, minimalist images. The result is contemporary and modern – and one that speaks to the digital world we all now live in.
Jeffrey Koh x Francesco de Molfetta
Is it a missile? A lampshade? An ode to fashion design? Perhaps only Jeffrey Koh and his collaborator Francesco de Molfetta really know. Contemplating just one of the works from the playful pair, who also dabble in film, theatre and even toys, is enough to invite some serious reflection on the consumer culture that enables all of the work featured at Fascination / Imagination.
Fascination / Imagination Mar 21-May 1, K11 Art Mall, 18 Hanoi Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui; k11concepts.com.