The relationship between Couture and Deconstruction – It’s an often and highly discussed topic, so I’ll try to put it into a nutshell.
Since a few decades it seems like there’s a battle in fashion going on. At the one hand the memorial couture with all its fairytale-like dresses, tailored beautifully, shifting us to fairytale moments. This is the Zeitgeist-Ideal of the former centuries. On the other hand, there’s the offensive deconstruction. A critical confrontation with “what runs counter to the structural unity”(1), the questioning and dissolution of the currently existing. By the broad public deconstructed fashion is often seen as the “fashion that’s not really pretty”.
Ever since fashion has been a symbol of wealth and a privilege to the aristocracy, as I mentioned in my last post. Couturiers and Designers, especially Christian Dior, knew what people wanted to wear after the second world war, when people had to arrange with the clothing they had left and repaired. In 1947 Christian Dior established the New Look. Perfectly tailored costumes and dresses, beautifully draped, accentuating the feminin silhouette. Everything was pretty wonderful – he hit the spot women were missing those days.
The disrupt, we can call it deconstruction, started in 1981. This was the year when Rei Kawakubo and Yoji Yamamoto came to Paris showing their disrupted and wasted looking collections to an international audience. It was the total opposite of what existing fashion was and determined to express. It was a scandal, people were shocked and it was raining harsh criticism by editors, people from the subject but also the public. The beauty ideal, which lasted centuries of fashion history, has been questioned for the first time in such a public way.
But those two pioneers were just the beginning of seperating fashion into two pieces for the upcoming decades. The Antwerp six, Margiela, Vetements or Balenciaga (under the direction of Demna Gvasalia since 2015, founder of Vetements 2009) were continuing those new ideals. Those new impulses are reaching everyone who has, in any way, a connection to fashion. It’s obvious, that deconstruction slowly trickles up or down (whatever you want to call it) into the overall spirit of fashion. Anyway, it seemed like the two counter-poles, Deconstruction and Couture, were working kind of against each other for decades…What’s the turning point right now….?
To be continued soon!!
(1) Source: wikipedia