So here we are again! In what is the second part to the ever expanding anthology of Lindsey's wearable art. In the previous blog I wanted to focus on the importance of accessible art. But I only really managed to scratch the surface of everything this concept has to offer. If you missed the last post, I highly recommend going back to check that out so you can understand how the latest rendition came about.
(Which you can do here)
Recently I've started internalizing the importance of this as an artist as well. Because sometimes the pressure to create new work becomes so overwhelming you may eventually exhaust yourself and burn out. When really it's much more fulfilling to keep exploring a concept, of course if you're passionate about it. There is no rule to say "create one piece and then move on." You can hold on to an idea until you have decided that you are finished with it. Since we've already discussed the paper chapter I think it is time we talk about how an artist can take a concept they are passionate about and begin to expand upon it.
After exploring the living sketchbook that was the paper monster and living through the stipulation of the dreaded "business casual"; Lindsey decided that she wan't done with the idea of wearable, sculptural art as a means of sketching. And began focusing in on as a way to get to know a new material, much like the paper. So this is where the Neoprene came in. With this materials it became about the flat colors and the ability to push the sculptural elements of a garment in new ways. Ties were able to be to added to make the garment more open to change with each wear, it becomes a new composition every time. And having the option for infinite combinations is something Lindsey tends to keep in mind as a common goal.
(Click here to see the entire uniform timeline)
Since I started digging into everything behind Lindsey's work, I've noticed a running theme of collage and collaboration as a form of communication in her creative process. So it would only be natural that this wearable piece took on a new and collaborative form for the gallery. If you have had the opportunity to visit this exhibition, then you must have noticed a monitor with moving imagery that looks a lot like the image above. Well, that's because it is!
(Here is an example of an animation by Bert, using Lindsey's plexi-sculpture)
The neon colored animation on display was done by Bert Marckwardt; who describes his process as different forms of collage whether it be garment design, poetry, or animation. Marckwardt wanted to apply his own creative process to this collaboration, to animate a collage of collages in separate acts.
Bert Marckwardt on each animated act:
"The 1st Act I refer to as the Iconography of Neoprene- here I wanted to explore the beginnings. I wanted it to be a celebration of sorts. In my case, when I go back to the basic core current of my childhood there was a draping of religion that guided my life. I wanted to give an appreciative nod to this rich visual canon- so I began looking a works by Albrecht Dürer, Goya, and El Greco to create this section. It is a background shared by Lindsey, I believe she went to a religious based high school where she wore a uniform and when she graduated and had the freedom to wear anything she wanted she began exploring wearing other uniforms.
-The 2nd Act I refer to as the Dance of Neoprene- a celebration of the Bolshoi Ballet. As a child I began a love affair of sorts with the artistry of Soviet culture. I was transfixed watching Soviet figure skater and gymnast. This magnetism I had with Soviet artistry led to my undergrad degree focusing on Soviet and Post Soviet Culture and Literature. One of the things I always found interesting was in 1991 during a fail coup to oust Gorbachev, Swan Lake was broadcast on repeat and only interrupted with “breaking” news updates- it was the only thing on tv during those couple of days. To tie back into Lindsey’s garment exploration, she mentions one of the uniforms she explored wearing was that of a ballerina.
-Act 3 is about the spirit of neoprene. This section is all about exploring the magic of neoprene in an everyday setting. It’s about a celebration that builds, goes away, and sprinkles back to life. I wanted this section to give a nod to what I feel is one of Lindsey’s core values: Celebrating- whether she is celebrating you, other artist, or celebrating celebration itself."
Here you can see Lindsey still utilizes the neoprene in everyday wear and continues to explore the material with movement sketches - which you can find on her Instagram stories @sparklezilla
With all this being explored, what truly interests me the most is the sketching aspect of this garment. It is definitely important to keep compositions and ideas in a sketchbook. But it becomes a whole other playing field when you incorporate physical action. Movement often has a way of showing us what we couldn't see before when the piece was stationary. And there really is never a true way to 100% recreate a composition. Because it lives in that moment, depending on how and if you choose to document it. And I for one always enjoy seeing the different compositions and ways the material moves, with or without action. It's like looking at Bert's animation in real time!
So, that leaves me here with a final thought: How would you document compositions without using a pen and paper? Performance? Collage? Social media? The possibilities really are endless!