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Collision is a publication is for the contemporary thinker who revels in intellectual literature, connoisseurs of design and an engaging approach to photography.

Black Beauty

Fifteen nights of new ones here Saw to the stars the first of many more trembling lips. A car park, cold, concentrated on the Raw space of a waiting room That I longed to be called out of

Hands I had not yet touched but knew To fit this strange sensation of feeling nothing new But everything different Shed light inside these two dark chambers Where valves and doors were pushed in Wrong directions until red walls turning right met.

I lost at last my past, as should reality When it catches its dream, in places I once Conjured up this mirage with closed eyes I am awake now, trembling lips and Cold hands to keep me pure when lace Around my feet is only left

‘We are not made to know little, but neither to know all’ was once that teaching until that warm cold night I learned that all is little, and everything Losing reason with the world that tried to put reason To me without the heart I was meant to know, is more than reason for yours to be my meaning.

Denied of my home another night, I am and We are of no fixed abode when the life in what Being we are blessed with is torn from its living, being lost. And seventeen stars lace the sky tonight I park in while I wait to be called out to you in the morning when we wake together under same spells and separate suns.

Put me up, lift me up, I am backing this horse For not the race nor the finish, but the hedges It will jump and fall over on this course I have not a penny to play with these bling odds But I’ve tucked my hand and my betting slip into your Shirt pocket, they might meet you someday at the finish line.

The Designer

Helen McAlinden is an award winning Irish designer who creates elegant luxury for the modern women. Never one to follow trends only to create them has helped her become well established in highend women’s fashion. The designs bespoke quiet sophistication and unfussy feminity.

Q& A H

ow would you describe your autumn winter collection this year? It has a slightly gothic look, a lot of black on black with luxurious fur trims. There is a big navy and sapphire story which then transcends into matte sequence evening looks. Simple and elegance has always been to key to my design aesthetic.


hat have you done differently this season?

I think we are beginning to see a return of the pant. In this collection, trousers suits have been introduced which nobody’s talked about for four or five seasons, it has been all about dresses. Which is I think be an interesting transition.


hat is a key outfit for any occasion?

An evening blazer is always good over a pair of skinny jeans. Keeping the look clean, crisp and classic. This season there is a debut of jersey pant and tweed jackets, which graced the collection. Developing into a neutral and heritage story for the collection with lux dove pallet and rich cashmeres.


hat kind of woman do you designer for?

I design for the modern women of all ages. Women who wish to look good but timeless. Each purchase is worth it’s time in gold as my designs are all about classical looks with a contemporary twist making the piece’s to even last up to ten year’s. Graceful and flattering cuts will always out last current “Trends” To have a few key pieces for a timeless capsule wardrobe stands the test of time. I use the very best in fabrics chosen for quality and durability that way if you buy well and only have to buy once.

The Photographer Last week I went to the Tim Walker exhibition at Somerset House, where a supersized swan graced a dining room, Agyness Deyn sensually fizzled in a sandy dune corner, and cartoon aircraft crashed through the wall in the ultimate collision with fantasy. I associate avant garde hats with this form of fashion photography, where models breathe surreal life through gothic branches, teacups and other such parties on their head. Like an extension of the story and silhouette, millinery makes a myth something so much more in a single shot.

The kind of creepiness, indeed, which Tim Burton used to specialize in during the days of Edward Scissorhands. Walker, unlike Burton, has never lost his transmission of the uncanny, the sinister edge of suburbia or the simplistic horror of a maggot gnawing through an apple.The current exhibition at Somerset House, London, is delicious for two reasons. Firstly, for housing a feast of Walker’s photographs and secondly for being curated so damn well. In recent years, the curating of fashion and art exhibitions has fallen into two camps. Either the decadent excess of the V&A, for example their Cult of Beauty exhibition, in which the exhibition itself is as much as part of viewing experience as the objects on display or the ‘Have wall; will hang pictures’ practice more commonly found in the Tate or National Gallery. Somerset House demonstrates the possibility of a middle path in which a traditional mode of curating is subtly perverted – perfectly mirroring the ideas in Walker’s photography. The Tate Britain recently decided to tone down all wall captions in exhibitions to appear more open to viewer interpretations. Somerset House keeps them but lets the text bleed around corners or drip in arrows down from the ceiling. A final afterword from Walker fills a wall like a big blob of pop art, proudly full of the multiple exclamation marks grammar pedants would delete. These tiny makeovers to the wall texts make all the difference in

aligning the exhibition space with the world in the photographs. Following words around a corner you walk right into the next photograph and find yourself taking tea with a honeybee. Aside from the gingerbread trails of words, the other thing that lets you into Walker’s world are the plus-sized props spread throughout the exhibition. In the first room there is a boat headed by two huge swans and hanging from the ceiling in the corridor is the skeleton of a giant. A lot of things are oversized in Tim Walker Land, including the elongated models, frequently Malgosia Bela, Guinevere Van Seenus or Karlie Kloss, and Lindsey Wixon’s pumped up lips.In the final room resides the ungainly giant doll, which once kicked Wixon across a barbed wire fence. Like Alice after she ate the cake, the doll is almost too tall for the room. With golden ringlets, googly eyes and a lispy-looking mouth she is the perfect example of why Walker makes you squirm.However, the blurring of life inside and outside his photos is probably most intense when Agyness Deyn is spotted in a door way (fake) propped open by sand (real) but, alarmingly, herself: fake. The image behind the door was taken on location in Africa for Vogue and the gamine Deyn in a flapper era swimming costume is only a photograph. I suppose they would have had to pay her too much to fill up the space all of the time

The Style Libby Jensen is a 20 year old Journlism and Media Northumbria University student. She describes herself and her style as unique, quirky and comfy. She has developed a distinctive and individual style that incorpoarates androgynous features yet reamains true to herself.

Q& A W

hat influences you and what influences what you wear? I don’t really have any general influences. Style wise, what looks good, fits in a flattering way and feels comfy.


ow did your style evolve? 

When I came to Uni I started becoming more individual and creating my own style.


here do you shop?

Topman and Urban Outfitters


ow would you describe your style?

Unique to me but still following a more masculine style that’s in fashion. I think it’s quite edgy and says a lot about my personality, as opposed to just following a general popular ‘now’ style.


hats your favourite item in wardrobe and why?

I’d have to say my red Adidas samba trainers atm, as they’re a bit out there and I can wear them with most things!

The Artist Paul Benney’s aesthetic is most eviedent in the group of work he refers to as his Night Painting’s which all to me in some way, encapsulate a sesne of nocturnal mystery. According to the curator his use of resin in this collection creates a text that is both reflective yet impenetrabe. Spatially using, it’s clouded surface obsucures time and distance.

Fashion Is.


he journey of a collection, designer or even a creative person, is always important and significant. It makes them who they are, it make me who I am. I discovered the fashion world much later than most “Fashion girls”, it was on a study break and influenced after one too many cycles of American’s Next Top Model, I decided to pick up vogue for the first time. I was hooked. There was this fantastic, magical and enchanting photo story by Tim Walker, Tales of The Unexpected that followed the most creative scenes. It made fashion so much more alive for me. And though I came into the game quite late, I understood it almost immediately. I understood that behind each fashion line there is story, depth and reason. I became conscious that every designer has a voice, a vision and a signature. I could now see fashion for what it

Fashion is


Imagination I

have a vivid recollection of the day Alexander McQueen died. I was in my grandparents and there was an announcement at the dinner table and the unfathomable words were spoken. I was struck with such shock that I immediately felt truly troubled by this news. It was a defining point on my learning curve of the fashion world. There was a tribute feature in the newspaper that weekend which I read so often the pages began to wilt between my fingertips. I felt so ridiculous at the time but that article gave me hope that my “silly despair” (as my family referred to it) that there were others that felt the same as me. For me McQueen represents true imagination and creativity. He broke the mold of commercial confinement and reshaped societies view of what fashion could be. He “Blurred the boundary between runway shows and a new kind of installation art.” According to Kristin Knox author of Alexander McQueen: Genius of a generation, a book every fashionista should have gracing their bookshelves. McQueen didn’t just push through the boundaries he burst right through the seams. His elaborate visions made reality, played with dangerous limits of rape, Sinicism, and grotesque profanities. Although it made me uncomfortable at times, it was thought provoking and engaging, I couldn’t look away or get enough. I surrendered myself to the world of McQueen. It was a genuine fanatical escape to his architected world. “Beauty can come form the most strangest of places even the most disgusting “ Tweeted McQueen a few day’s before his death, an image and text I don’t think I could ever forget. You could never undermine his work by saying it was just clothes. His unrivaled craftsmanship along with his creative ability made him a true visionary. His disinterest of commercial aspirations makes him in my own view a true inspiration.

Fashion is Intelligence. A

nother designer, which I feel represents the esthetic of exhibition art on the runway, is Gareth Pugh. A designer I feel particularly drawn to and I was lucky enough to attend a live interview in which he was questioned about his past, future and present. I took him to be reserved and very down to earth demur that almost made him more impressive. With similar background to McQueen, a humble up bringing and unexpected success in an unheard of field makes his triumph even more so. I feel he challenges modern thinking and breaks away from the commercial route and stays true to his own voice. A question that stuck with me particularly when asked why he show’s in Paris and not London, (I do warn you, I am quoting from memory, though I feel it is every bit as true). Pugh replied, “People in London don’t take you very seriously” and then humorously he added “You could sell shit on a stick in Paris and they would see it as art”. Presenting his collection to the right audience is in my opinion, smart and an intelligent choice. Though he doesn’t conform to the commercial route unlike his peers. He is still looking to compete and develop himself as a designer. He has I feel, made himself relevant in today’s fashion circuit.


reaking from norms like entitling collections he allows himself the openness to orchestrate his direction with flow that allow his inspirations fluidity. Never confining him to any one way. For me he empowers women in an acute and intense approach; his collections evoke a strong sense of being, femininity and strength. He creates fearless women and empowers them in whatever form his line takes, whether it be geometric, warrior and most recently a slant on the romantic edge. To have such a vast and strong approach, I feel it is hard not to acknowledge the validity of his talent. Though I really only began to look at his work around the time of the interview, I was struck by such awe of how a person could have such a particular view and voice without ever refining himself or his designs. His colour palate is very dominant in the monochrome of black, white and grey rarely ever varying off that course. I feel a strong sense that skill and vision are much more important to him and it almost narrows down what the designer is trying to say with his collections. That talent to tell a story through shape, skill, and texture is embraced by the fashion industry and me for that matter. A visionary and a modernist and in my personal view, Gareth Pugh is on a journey to becom-

Fashion is Art. F

rom my experience the art world particularly, modern art has always been hesitant and reluctant to recognize the connection between the two forms, fashion and art. Although I do disagree, over all I can see the initial hesitation involved. With the intelligibility of the commercial sector and fashion, the reluctance is understandable from the modernist art aspect. However I have found with a little review it is undeniable that there is a strong connection between them both. Last January I went to the V&A and visited an exhibition, Post Modernism. Post modernism from what I learnt broke the mold and gave art and design a new reign of freedom. The then confirmed ideas challenged the notion of styles in the 1980’s. I feel it re thinks the ideals and relationship between art and mainstream culture. Clothes can be seen to challenge the social norms, which upon my discovery, surprisingly Vivienne Westwood is a perfect example of that. I was amazed to see some of her pieces in the exhibition as I had always associated her roots with the birth of the punk era. However upon closer evaluation my findings highlighted the fact, that her clothes weren’t figure hugging but warp, distort and cover up the female figure in her SS 1983 collection, which before then, Westwood had the esthetic of “Underwear for outerwear”. It was surprising but not unexpected. I always felt Westwood to be a forward thinker only every concerned with the art of the clothes. This in my view brings radical and feminist thinking. To challenge conformity by what we wear was and still is a new thinking. To question social norms by what we wear say’s so much more and creates initial impact. From this point of view, it comes to my conclusion that movement’s in the art world are helped and evolved along side the evaluations and era’s in the fashion arena. She has a signature, ethos and a way in which she disregards media and mainstream ideals. Her talent alone has kept her working and achieving. And true talent needs nothing else and therefore in my eyes she is

I think the fashion world is ever evolving and ever changing and there is always something to be learnt. There is always a new direction and new inspiration that changes and brings about a revolution in design, ethos and even social thinking. Thought provoking fashion in my opinion is art. If it challenges you or evokes in you some glimmer of emotion then is has had the same effect as the conformed view that art is. I think it is archaic to suggest that fashion is beneath art that it does not deserve to be in the same category; I think art has a lot to learn from fashion, impending deadlines, high pressure positions and the ability to draw upon true talent and inspiration again and again and remain inspiring, moving and stimulating. Fashion for me is everything. Fashion is art.

She was lost

Collision Sinead Freeman  
Collision Sinead Freeman  

A clash between art and fashion