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DRESSING THE SCREEN: THE RISE OF FASHION FILM Traditionally high fashion appeared on the seasonal catwalk shows of the great couture houses, and was relayed to the public via still photography. The purpose of these photographs was to promote the brand, and sell the product. In recent years, driven by technological advances in image making, the huge expansion of the internet and it’s capability for viewing video, a new medium of creative promotion has taken hold: Fashion Film. This new medium has grown and developed in parallel to dominant contemporary media platforms such as YouTube and online magazines, which give instant access to a globally networked audience and market. Pioneered by the online platform SHOWstudio, and powered by the spread of broadband internet, and the popularity of video sharing sites like YouTube and Vimeo, fashion film has emerged as an influential new format for fashion editorial online. The emergence of the Fashion Film has had a marked effect on the fashion community causing a re-think of previously unchallenged marketing and communications tenets, with some designers going so far as to abandon the traditional catwalk show.




Featured designers and filmmakers will include SHOWstudio’s Nick Knight and Ruth Hogben, Biba, Leigh Bowery, Vivienne Westwood, Alexander McQueen, Hussein Chalayan, Gareth Pugh, Henry Holland and Burberry. Pivotal moments in fashion, film and technology - from pre-internet early experiments such as the early films of Ossie Clark, Vivienne Westwood and Bella Freud - to pioneering technological advancements such as Burberry’s hologram and Cassette Playa’s Augmented Reality will be displayed alongside specially commissioned installations. The UK is seen as the birthplace of fashion film and Dressing the Screen will explore the origins, history and the pioneering role UK film makers and designers have played in its development in an extensive and never seen before overview of fashion film.

DRESSING THE SCREEN: INTERNATIONAL TOUR The exhibition was first shown as the finale of the British Council’s contribution to the UK Now Festival in China in October 2012. The exhibition was organised in collaboration with Modern Media International and Swarovski Elements and hosted by U.C.C.A. It appeared in 55 reports in the Chinese media, and stories in the UK appeared in, Dazed Digital, notjustalabel and Disegno. This is expanding on previous fashion film work the British Council has done in Bosnia, Portugal, Slovenia, Nigeria, The Philippines, Indonesia, Russia and Georgia. In September 2013, an abridged version of Dressing the Screen opened at ICAS in Singapore as an official fringe event of Singapore Digital Fashion Week.

WORKSHOPS / TALKS The exhibition seeks to highlight a growing trend in fashion image making, and inspire audiences to participate through a series of wraparound activities including key fashion film industry speakers, practical workshops and networking events for both professionals and students. A series of inspirational workshops, talks and panel discussions are proposed with educational and media partners.

WORKSHOPS / TALKS Key guest speakers we have previously worked with on Dressing the Screen: Ruth Hogben, the world's leading fashion filmmaker, who has created pioneering films for designers including Rick Owens, Alexander McQueen, Hussein Chalayan, Gareth Pugh and videos for popstars including Lady Gaga and Kanye West. Jamie Perlman, Creative Director of British Vogue, and founder of Testmag, an online platform for fashion film that encourages collaborations between film directors and fashion designers. Within our fashion programme we have also worked with The Clotheswhisperer, Peter Jensen, Louise Gray, James Long, Marios Schwab , Paul Smith, Sophia Kokosalaki, Vivienne Westwood, Hussein Chalayan, Osman Yousefzada, Lucie Muir, WGSN, Masha Karpushina, William Richard Green, David David, Elisha Smith-Leverock, Bill Amberg, Cassette Playa, Amy de la Haye and Hannah Martin.

EXHIBITION OVERVIEW The exhibition is organised into 7 sections within separate rooms, or within uniquely designed areas within one large space. The 7 sections include: 1. Looking Back: 1938 - 1990 2. Catwalk,Theatre and Spectacle 3. Innovation Before the Internet 4. SHOWstudio 5. Digital Revolution: 2008 - 2013 6. Art & Fashion / Art & Game 7. New Technologies and Fashion


1 Looking Back: 1938 – 1990: Early cinema experiments with Fashion & Moving Image from 1930’s – 1990’s. Examples : Norman Hartnell, Mary Quant, Jaeger, Ossie Clark, Zandra Rhodes, Vivienne Westwood


2 Catwalk,Theatre and Spectacle: Films of the catwalk used as a space of performance and theatre Featuring work from Hussein Chalayan, Body Map, Leigh Bowery


3 Innovation Before the Internet: Designers experimenting with moving image before 1998 - 2008 Including Vivienne Westwood, Rifat Ozbek and Bella Freud with John Malkovich.


4 SHOWstudio: A specially curated section looking chronologically at the work created for the pioneering platform from 2000 up until today. Featuring work by Nick Knight collaborating with designers such as Alexander McQueen, Gareth Pugh, Maison MartinMargiela and Walter Van Beirendonck.


5 Digital Revolution 2008 – 2013: Exploring the recent developments of fashion film in the new digital age, including animation,commercials, narrative and technology. With work by Holly Fulton and Quentin Jones, Elish Smith-Leverock, House of Holland and Sarah Chatfield, Zaiba Jabbar, Margot Bowman for Costume National, Ruth Hogben with Louis Vuitton, Barnaby Roper, Gareth Pugh, Lernet & Sander, Marie Schuller, Richard Nicol, Amanda Boyle for Mulberry


6 The Art of Fashion: A presentation of short films blurring the boundaries between fashion and art. Featuring work by Kathryn Ferguson, Julie Verhoeven, Sarah Piantadosi and Alice Hawkins.


7 New Technologies and Fashion: Exploring how fashion is being propelled by technological and digital innovations Work includes Post Magazine for the I pad, Cassette Playa’s Augmented reality presentations, and Burberry’s hologram.

EXHIBITION DESIGN Designed by UK-based Serie Architects, Dressing the Screen has a simple and ethereal exhibition design. There is a strong emphasis on a simple, high tech install with high quality HD projectors, screens and speakers and as little visual distraction from the films as possible. The exhibition can be viewed in 30 minutes or for hours, and the design helps create an immersive environment for this journey. Based around a rigging system and translucent curtains, the design is flexible and adaptable to varying spaces.



Belfast born Kathryn Ferguson is a filmmaker and curator, working with both the British Council & The British Fashion Council specialising in the emerging genre of fashion film. She has directed short films for fashion designers and musicians including Chloe, Richard Nicoll, Charlie Le Mindu, Katie Eary, Lady Gaga and Domino Records. These films have been featured on MTV, SHOWstudio, Dazed Digital, Bubblebyte, the BBC and in Vogue. Her experimental film work has been selected for film festivals, screenings and group shows around the world including OneDotZero, the 59th Berlinale, the V&A, the Pompidou Centre, ASVOFF Barcelona, BYOB and Birds Eye View Film Festival at the BFI.

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