Geraldine Wharry: Beautiful Creatures
How we see and imagine nature fuels our imagination. Designers, season after season, present their fantasy vision of wildlife often navigating between the seductive, mysterious and playful.
For the whole of 2017, the relationship between human being and animal life will be explored at the Wellcome Collection, starting with the exhibition "How we see Nature". Not for the faint of heart, the event examines what we think, feel and how we value other species from taxidermy displays to literature, film and audio recordings.
This echoes the resurgence of bright 3D surface treatments inspired by wildlife, from the dichroic fringed effects seen at Phelan to the Sesame street 'Big Bird' shapes at Desiree Slabik and Gucci.
The most compelling recent creative project we discovered was Hayley Webber's Bath Spa graduate collection. Her work led us to dive into birdlife, researching mixed media couture embellishments amalgamating beading, plastics and fur. Raffia also forms a key material in this trend dedicated to enhanced bio-mimicry pushed to the playful and surreal.
This is a future design direction for textiles and colour key to watch and track with Avatar 2 set to be released in December 2018. LVMH itself just cut ties to all Crocodile farms whilst PETA just became an investor in Louis Vuitton.
Expect designers to synthetically recreate furs, beads and feathers in unparalleled interpretations, which will in subtle and less subtle ways reference 1920's glamour.
For more on Haley Webber's work go to @hayleywebber_design or contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
By Geraldine Wharry | Research contribution: Emily Huggins
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