Friday, January 25, 2008

Yesterday I went to the London College of Fashion for an open day and by the time I exited the building I was sold on Fashion Curation as an MA. I expect that I will get the usual run of questions from people, questions like "what are you going to do with it?" The answer will be, work hard and use it or simply enjoy the process of allowing my brain to take in something new and interesting. The prospect of creating in this way after sitting behind a desk and being involved with politics and journalism for two years is utterly joyous, being in that environment made me feel very cheerful very quickly but also quite committed to working hard. I would like to feel passionate about work, passion always makes difficulty feel less permanent. When I got home and looked up the course I realised that I had just met Amy de la Haye who edited Defining Dress, one of the first fashion theory collections I ever read. I would say that it was a factor in my decision but I had already emailed my undergraduate course tutor asking for a reference so the decision had been made. At first glance it might seem odd that I didn't know the name of the tutor but I wasn't considering Fashion Curation before I walked into the room at 5pm, I had been sure that I wanted to do the history course. The problem is that dry academia has never been my thing, I love organising, the practical aspects of life appeal to me, I am good at administration and filing, tidying things up and moving furniture around, creating intuitive spaces for other people. There is an interview with Judith Clark about curating a fashion exhibition here that will perhaps bring that sense of ideal and organistation across. I haven't yet watched it in full but the first half is very interesting, the narrative of her work is particularly intriguing and you get a shape of the process of the way she has approached the idea of the exhibition which is helpful to understanding this type of job.

My first fashion exhibition was Addressing the Century at the Hayward in 1998. I was 17 and sold on clothes as an artform as soon as I walked through the door. I had no idea that I could find garments so exciting and it really woke me up to a world I hadn't been aware of. It was curated by Peter Wollen who as it turns out has written an article entitled The Concept of Fashion in The Arcades Project. I would very much like to read this because Benjamin's work regarding fashion interests me but is sometimes difficult to take from its context, especially with The Arcades Project which is so large. Since then I've been a bit of a staple at the V&A exhibitions. I think I'm going to be kicking myself for missing The Golden Age of Couture for decades.

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