The London trip 10/10/2013


This was the London trip to the V&A museum, but before we arrived I began to make notes of how the city of London was inspiring me looking at it through the coach window, I decided to break this down into keywords that had connotations linking back to London , these were:

  • Geometry / architecture
  • Big brands/ labels/ typography
  • Lights
  • Money
  • Shopping
  • Expensive
  • Underground
  • The colour red – buses, post boxes

Once I entered the museum I began to document what I saw. The first was a beautiful set of lights that hung just above the entrance and reception area; there was something about the installation that was mesmerising. The architecture of the building itself had connotations of ancient Greece/Rome somewhat coliseum inspired. The museum had works of pottery, fashion, sculptures and others aspects of art and design, the work that caught my attention was the Greek statue near the entrance (Eurydice by joseph Edgar Boehm), I liked the idea of how it was being ignored by people passing by, as though it wasn’t part of the museum, people preferred to go see the other exhibitions and I was inspired by that sense of abandonment for a piece of work. There were other similar sculptures scarred around the museum it’s as though they weren’t part of the real exhibition because they weren’t contained in their own exhibition space. The sculptures themselves were mainly of curvaceous women draped in loose clothing and this birthed the idea of creating a garment that expresses all of these qualities. I knew the concept had to be innovative, weird and quirky but what if my garment expressed this through a more calm and controlled way? For the rest of the day I was able to explore other exhibitions on show and other areas of London.

The fashion aspect of the museum included work from designers such alexander McQueen, Karl Lagerfeld, yohji Yamamoto and Christopher Kane. I felt inspired by their work because there was so much on show and to learn from, I made sure that I took as many photographs as I could because I knew I wouldn’t have the time to draw each one I liked. There was also a club to catwalk exhibition, however I wasn’t able to attend it but I felt that I had already begun to have design ideas for this new project.

I also realised that the words I used to describe London were also visible in the museum, there were aspects of geometry, lighting and typography  in all the different pieces of work. I also enjoyed recording videos to show what I had seen as there was so much information to take in.

So what?

What I learn was that observation and recording were crucial to the progression and understanding of this project as I needed some sort of inspiration as a foundation to begin from. The experience of going to the V&A allowed me to observe in a way that I could see qualities in sculptures and paintings and translate that into a garment design or something in relation to fashion and textiles. Because there was so much on display I really had narrow down as to what themes I would be exploring. What worked well was the way I was able to record using digital means and this was reliable and fast, however what didn’t work so well was trying to draw the garments as a way of documentation, as it turned out to be too difficult because there was so much on display. So what was the point of the exhibition?  It was a great way of gaining inspiration from all aspects of art and design and being able to apply them to a project that is about fabric, cut and innovation, as the museum wasn’t just about fashion it was a way for me to start thinking outside the box and exploring realms of fashion innovation that have not already been explored in a particular way.

Now what?

Through evaluation of the whole trip the museum had a successful collection of exhibitions that showcased high standard work from all areas of art and throughout history. I think I did a good job of being able to capture that statement through photographs, they tell the story of the museum and what I thought was worth taking a picture of. I can apply this to my learning by reinforcing the element of documentation because it can spark ideas in the most unexpected way. Therefore my next step now will be to start working/ experimenting on the dress stand and trying to bring my design ideas to life. Ill begin this either by creating a pattern from the mannequin or use a jacket block and start to manipulate its look. I also want to start thinking about what fabrics and materials I want to use to create this jacket and also start researching into different cuts that can change a garment. The next time I visit a gallery or museum il improve by doing some observation drawings, maybe some 5 minute quick sketches and also take notes whilst I’m viewing the exhibition so I can document what I saw and felt at that present moment. I will do these activities because I want to better my documentation skills as well as show that I know how to professionally analyse and evaluate an exhibition and make it relate to my work.



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