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The Art of Fashion: How Gallery Masterpieces Inspire Runway Masterpieces

by Margherita Farano

Art and fashion have long been intertwined, with designers drawing inspiration from the works of renowned artists to create captivating runway collections. 

For Spring/Summer ‘24, Andreas Moskin’s collection inspired by A Bigger Splash by David Hockney is notable. 

Hockney is known for using vivid colours and, specifically in Moskin’s reference painting, pastel pink and yellow stand out most - these shades being translated across the Moskin collection. 

The new Moskin garments are characterised by vibrant colours that capture the joyful air of spring. Among bold palazzo pants and bermuda shorts, the designer takes up the angular shapes shown in the form of deconstructed or no-collar blazers. The peculiarity lies in the square shape of the shoulders, handcrafted while maintaining the brand’s signature aesthetic. 

While Andres Moskin’s latest collection channels the vibrant tone and geometric forms of David Hockney’s A Bigger Splash, other brands have also left their mark by intertwining the realms of art and fashion. 

Among these stands Madeleine Vionnet and her revolution in the way women’s bodies are seen through fashion. Vionnet’s goal was focused: free the woman’s body. Something she succeeded at by introducing the bias cut for the first time during the early 1920s. 

The bias cut, which means to 'be cut on the grain', involves placing the pattern at a 45° angle on the fabric, allowing the 'warp' and 'weft' threads to provide the fabric with increased elasticity and stretch.

Inspired by Greek drapery, she decided to cut the fabric diagonally instead of following the straight line of the weave. She often went to the Louvre to study ancient marble sculptures and artefacts and took inspiration from classical Greek friezes to create airy, light and in motion dresses. Thus, she invented a new way of treating the female body by freeing it and giving it brazenness through the bias cut.

Moschino also found another way to include art in fashion with its collection completely inspired by the works of Picasso. 

Jeremy Scott, for the SS '20 collection, decided to pay homage to the father of cubism by showing outfits inspired by his pieces of art: from Les Demoiselles D’Avignon (1907) to Bouquet of Peace (1958).  

With Rosalia’s music accompanying the show, Moschino succeeded to bring cubism and its liveliness onto the runway through bizarre shapes and bright colours. 

This intersection of art and fashion is not limited to specific eras or artists; it is a timeless dialogue that continues to evolve and inspire. 

Yves Saint Laurent’s iconic collaboration with Piet Mondrian in 1965 exemplifies this, as Mondrian’s legendary geometric compositions inspired Saint Laurent’s groundbreaking shift dresses, merging art and fashion in a bold and graphic statement. 

The Autumn/Winter collection saw twenty-six out of a hundred and six designs in the show echo the artist’s work. Most memorable is the cocktail dress that evoked Mondrian’s abstract canvases. Its simple cuts, geometrical lines, and bold colours gave the designer’s collection a modern feel. 

By wanting to reflect the idea that dresses are made of colours, not only of lines, Saint Laurent laid the foundations for a refined aesthetic focused on simple cuts and geometrical lines. 

Piet Mondrian himself stated, “Not only does fashion accurately reflect an era, it is also one of the more direct forms of visual expression in human culture.”

Edited by Emily Duff

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