To reference fashion’s irreverent relationship to art is not only clichéd but also a complete given. There has, of course been an eternal dialogue between the two and now, in this age of mass content sharing and upcycled inspirations; there is a greater reciprocal influence.
Following seasons of digitalised fantasies, delivered in florals, abstracts and non-prints, the graphic realities became repurposed digital impressions for SS14. Brushstrokes, paint splodges and diluent watercolours all play their part across womenswear and from AW14, in a perhaps more digitised devaluation, in menswear. Raf Simons and Issey Miyake offered up technical interpretations while Craig Green’s hand painted prints proved that there’s always a place for paint. Further down the line, just yesterday at Jacket Required we noticed a smattering of painterly printed street wear.
Cultural currents of recent past and future had weighted influence on this affair with the topical reverence of the Abstract Expressionists, the aftermath of MoMA’s de Kooning exhibition and the hype of the Tate Modern’s Matisse. In New York there has also been an Impressionist retrospective at the Met and a Polke at MoMA, which have accrued a certain collective cultural penchant for the Modern painters. In contemporary art there has also been something of a cut and paste obsession, which has heralded the pigmental value of paint. Laure Provoust won last year’s Turner Prize with her installation that was, in part, comprised of some highly influential strokes.
The case in point goes no further without looking at the eternal influencer, Karl Lagerfeld’s Chanel supermarket with spectral strokes everywhere while, on the high street, Zara looked to Celine’s palette and print.
Resort 2015 seems to show a reversion to more clearly defined amorphous graphics and a seasonally reflective floral fascination that are also unpainted and realised in a macro-minimalism. Watercolour has returned to inky, washed tie-dyes and while the moment may have passed for the abstract impression, its reevaluation and subsequent reappearance, even in the subtlest reference, is inevitable.