Today's blog comes from Janet, Central Library staff:
The Red Dress by Valerie Steele is a fascinating book for those who enjoy couture. It has the fabrics, design and punchy, high-end photography that are expected; but the historic images are a surprise. Along with the 20th century fashion designs, Steele has scattered paintings such as Hans Holbein the Younger’s (1497-1543) red dress on Anne of Cleves (Queen of England at the time) and graphic designer posters.
I have several favorites from this book, one of which has to be Issey Miyake’s “dress” wrapping multiple models in one huge stretchy band of red. This is just like Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s wrapped art works!
My next favorite design would be Yohji Yamamoto’s suede dress. It’s the photography that is the thing here. Red-tinged, big black hair, boots walking on air and swirling fabric on a deep black background—great shot. The writer says it’s Mongolian inspired; but I’m reminded of a really dramatic scene in the film Memoirs of a Geisha set in Japan.
One thread of interest leads to another; so you might check out Christo & Jeanne Claude: on the way to the Gates by Jonathan Fineberg. Our collection also includes the book, the film and the soundtrack of Memoirs of a Geisha, as well as a portrait of the film by David James.