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  1. by Lou Stoppard .

    SHOWstudio in Helsinki!

    I am thrilled to be in Finland for Pre Helsinki, a fashion event supported by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland in collaboration with a range of Finnish creatives. Finland has a rich history of beautiful design work, from the iconic Marimekko 'unikko' print, recognised across the world for its joyful simplicity (and aptly celebrating its 50th birthday this year), to the output of younger, upcoming creatives like Satu Maaranen, who won last year's fashion design prize at the 2013 Hyères festival. While here, we've been privileged to get to see some of this work up-close. A highlight was visiting fashion designer Vuokko Nurmesniemi's house, which was built by her late husband, acclaimed designer Antti Nurmesniemi and is perhaps one of the most wonderful pieces of sixties residential architecture in existence. 83-year-old Nurmesniemi was kind enough to regale us with stories from her long career in fashion, discussing how she's influenced everyone from Raf Simons and Issey Miyake to a whole generation of young Finnish designers. Nurmensniemi's work, both at Marimekko and at her own label Vuokko, was truly revolutionary and ahead of its time and helped establish the reputation of Finland as a design centre in the fifties. Nurmensnimi pioneered dresses made out of one piece of fabric, large prints and clean, futuristic shapes and freed women from corsets and general design fuss. What an icon!

    My schedule also included a visit to the Marimekko textile printing factory, which allowed me a peek at the brand's wonderfully-named 'Colour Kitchen' where they dream up their iconic hues. While watching the bold prints come to life, it was impossible not to reflect on how progressive and exciting the brand was when it debuted cheerful androgynous shapes and unconventional patterns in the fifties and sixties, designs that set new parameters of taste. It's great to see that the brand is now championing new design talent, as Maaranen herself was working in the factor as a freelance designer.

    One of the main reasons I came to Helsinki was to partake in the Aalto Arts Fashion Seminar, which took place in the middle of our schedule at Aalto University and was titled 'For Fa$hion's S@ke'. I was honoured and thrilled to be co-chairing the discussion alongside the seminar's guest curator Dan Thawley from A Magazine Curated By. Our lineup of speakers was second to none - milliner (and SHOWstudio favourite) Stephen Jones, LCF's brilliant dean Frances Corner, designer Lutz Huelle, sound designer Michel Gaubert and his partner and collaborator Ryan Aguilar. There was one notable absentee, the wonderful and fearsome Professor Louise Wilson, who sadly passed away last weekend. Naturally, we dedicated the talk to her memory, and kept in mind all the insightful, witty and cutting remarks she would have made had she been able to join us as we discussed how fashion has got so fashionable. The 3 hour plus discussion saw us navigate topics such as the difference between 'consumption' and 'fashion', the way Instagram has revolutionised both shopping and design, the accessibility of 'high fashion' and the paradox of 'affordable luxury'. It was a truly brilliant discussion and I'm thrilled that footage of it will be available on SHOWstudio shortly! A highlight for me was spending a part of the talk sporting Stephen Jones' brilliant 'Interview' hat, which features a mini screen that can display a hat of your choice, whether a bowler, top hat or cap. Truly the best example of wearable tech I've come across - move over smart watches!

  2. by SHOWstudio .

    What Would Julia Do?

    The soon-to-be-released What Would Julia Do is a collection of images taken by photographer Rebecca Thomas, assembled in the form of a documentary photographic essay focusing on her friend and noteable figure, Princess Julia.

    This is not the first time Princess Julia, crowned by the club kids for her nightlife endevaours, has had her striking personality and appearance captured. She has been a name of recognition since her early 1980s participation of the Blitz Kids club scene and hanging around with people from Marc Almond to Boy George. Princess Julia, as the creator of this photographic journal puts it, 'glides through the worlds of fashion, music, art and ‘general frippery’. She has been a DJ, model, muse, musician, writer and curator. She is a totem of, tribute to and inspiration for London’s underground artistic endeavours.'

    Consequently, the pages of Thomas' What Would Julia Do are filled with Princess Julia's antics and adventures, featuring members of London's creative scene such as Pam Hogg, Judy Blame and Dinos Chapman. A resulting selection of glossy yet candid, amusing and thoroughly intriguing images available this May!

    In the meantime meander through some of our fashion Collections panel discussions such as Roksanda Illincic and Rick Owens A/W 14 - with Princess Julia in the chair (and cameo's from her cover star dog Barney) there's never a dull opinion. 

     

     

  3. by Calum Knight .

    Wavy Spice
    AKA Princess Nokia

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  4. by SHOWstudio .

    The Shaun Leane exhibition opens tomorrow!
    Visit us at 19 Motcomb St

    The wait is nearly over as SHOWstudio Shop's Shaun Leane exhibition opens to the public tomorrow 23 May 2014! At a private view this morning, Shaun Leane himself revealed the inspirations behind the latest SHOWcabinet. Leane spoke of an interest in the history of Cabinets of Curiosities, which the curation of the show reflects, as well as the inspiration he derived from each piece. On Damien Hirst's Psalm 136: Confitemini he explained 'it's so full of life but also about death' echoing the codes of his house; a fascination with fleeting beauty and nature.

    Our own Nick Knight also contributed a few words, explaining the motivation behind displaying Leane's work alongside the art and artefacts that inspire it 'SHOWstudio has always been about showing how artists work in conversation with one another'.

    Visit 19 Motcomb St from tomorrow to experience the exhibition, which features bespoke pieces by Leane alongside artefacts that inspire it including the original Damien Hirst, a piece from the archive of Daphne Guinness, a raw natural emerald and more!

  5. by SHOWstudio .

    Lily Cole talks Steven Meisel in the next segment of 'Subjective'

    Subjective is the latest series instigated by Nick Knight to explore the history of contemporary fashion photography through the eyes of those who are at the centre of the image, but often left voiceless - the models. So far, Knight has sat down with Kate Moss who opened up about working with Corrine Day and Kristen McMenamy who spoke about creating images with Helmut Newton.

    The next iconic individual to share her stories from all sides of the lens is Lily Cole. Knight intially chats with Cole about the notion of learning to model, to which she responds, 'I think it's quite intuitive; I wouldn't instinctively call it a skill but I think you do get better at it from practising but in quite a natural way. You can't study it.' 

    This follows on to centre around a photograph Steven Meisel took of Cole for Vogue Italia in July 2003, when the British model was just fifteen. She shares working with Meisel, his attention to every detail in her body and face that leads to creating one of the images that undeniably launched her international career, whilst still at school. 'He's very good at finding nuances... particular but gentle.' 

    Listen to this candid interview now and stay tuned for more, rare Subjective perspectives from the likes of Alek Wek and Raquel Zimmerman. 

  6. by SHOWstudio .

    Watch Laura Falconer's new fashion film!

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    We're excited to launch a new fashion film by filmmaker and frequent SHOWstudio contributor Laura Falconer! Ripple was shot during Taiwanese-born fashion designer and Central Saint Martins MA graduate ShaoYen's A/W 14 presentation at London Fashion Week and showcases pieces from his collection. To correspond with ShaoYen's conceptual starting point of 'a single water drop onto a sheer slither of translucent water', Falconer used lighting and projections on top of a dream-like set, designed by Rain Wu & Clio Capeille. The result? An ethereally beautiful depiction of ShaoYen's rich, flowing collection.

  7. by SHOWstudio .

    The latest Ugly contribution: an essay by Harriet Walker

    Recently, we kicked off our Ugly project, which unpicks fashion's fascination with deliberately 'ugly' aesthetics. So far, we've live streamed a fashion film shoot featuring fashion by Christopher Kane, J.W Anderson, Margiela and more, and launched an enthralling discussion between SHOWstudio editor Lou Stoppard and director and chief curator of The Museum at the Institute of Fashion Technology, Valerie Steele. Next to take the garish baton is writer Harriet Walker.

    The NeverUnderDressed.com fashion features director initially assesses society's obsession with perfection, dissecting everything from Spanx to selfies. 'We go to the ends of the Earth to find our best angles. Sometimes we get a little help sharpening them too,' she writes. However, Walker sees a countermovement appearing. 'What we see increasingly, both on the catwalk and the pavement, is a willingness in high-end and high street shoppers alike to reconsider the archetypal precepts of female dress,' she argues.

    Walker's essay is an astute analysis, contributing to our on-going exploration of all things repulsive and all those who are repelled. Read her brilliant piece now and stay tuned for more in the series from fashion historian Lucy Norris and The Independent's Alex Fury.

  8. by SHOWstudio .

    Watch experts talk fashion education

    SHOWstudio is proud to be teaming up with The Royal College of Art for the second year running to celebrate their MA graduate fashion show, which features work by menswear, womenswear, knitwear and millinery graduates and will be streamed live on SHOWstudio on 29 May.

    In preparation for the show and to provide a useful resource for our student viewership, SHOWstudio streamed a live panel discussion on the topic of fashion education on 12 May. The line-up included RCA's Wendy Dagworthy, fashion journalist Iain R. Webb, and designers and RCA alumni Matthew Miller and Holly Fulton, as well as our own Lou Stoppard. The talk was particularly poignant as it times with Professor Dagworthy's retirement from her position as head of fashion at the RCA. During her time at the RCA, and before that Central Saint Martins, Dagworthy has taught some of the fashion industry's most acclaimed names, from Stella McCartney and Hussein Chalayan to Giles Deacon and Erdem. She was also instrumental in the establishment the first incarnation of London Fashion Week. Dagworthy and the rest of the panel chatted animately about the ways London's colleges have changed over time, the way to make the most of a degree and the way in which tuition fees and budget cuts have affected arts education. Watch on-demand footage of the panel now.

  9. by SHOWstudio .

    Our J.W Anderson Design Download winner is...

    For our tenth Design Download - launched as a special Christmas gift to viewers - J.W. Anderson offered up not one but two patterns. The designer invited our viewers to reinterpret the leather top and balloon skirt from his acclaimed A/W 13 collection by downloading the patterns, printing them off and then fashioning a whole new look. Budding creatives from around the world took part, with entries coming in from places such as Singapore, Los Angeles, Sydney and Melbourne. Today, 19 May, after much deliberation from Nick Knight and J.W himself (our esteemed judges), we are thrilled to announce that the winner of the competition is…Ryan Rodriguez. Rodriguez is currently a student at Central Saint Martins. His concept for the Design Download was to use the pattern to make a garment that allows the wearer to adapt the shape of the garment's silhouette freely in every way. By loosely weaving Chinese silk, poly latex and cotton, then connecting all the ends to toggles, Rodriguez made garments that allow the wearer to pull at any toggle to adjust the garment vertically and horizontally, creating countless silhouettes and line variations. His pieces will now star in a specially commissioned SHOWstudio fashion film. Congrats Ryan and well done to all who entered!

  10. by SHOWstudio .

    Nick Knight's second ever fashion film!

    Nick Knight dug deep into his archive to pull out his second ever fashion film! The film's launch coincides with our Kate Moss month on Tumblr and explores society's obsession with images of celebrities and our voyeuristic tendencies when it comes to icons. The film was shot in 1995 during Knight's first ever session working with Moss, who was twenty years old at the time and fast becoming a worldwide star. It features footage from security cameras - a nod to the debate and controversy that surrounded surveillance culture at the time of filming - and presents Moss going about a normal day, from waking up to visiting a Madison Avenue studio to returning home. It is only as the film progresses that the viewer realises he is watching Moss from a stalker's perspective in a sinister play on anonymity, fame and privacy. The work was edited at the time by friend and collaborator Jason Evans (Travis).

    Watch The More Visible They Make Me, The More Invisible I Become now!

  11. by Lou Stoppard .

    Rest in Peace Louise Wilson

    All of us at SHOWstudio are saddened to hear of the death of Louise Wilson. Officially, Louise was professor of fashion design at Central Saint Martins, but in reality she was so much more. She was a visionary, an educator who never took the easy route and taught her students just enough to get them through a degree, but instead sought to completely upturn the way they thought, reprogramming their creative brains. By doing that Louise changed the lives of most of her students. She pushed countless figures across fashion to create their best work and find their vision through a mixture of wit, aggression and, frankly, unbridled mania. I studied under Louise. It was a privilege. She was utterly fearless and totally uncompromising - my favourite kind of woman. There are nowhere near enough words to describe the great debt the fashion world owes her. This interview with Hywel Davies from 2011 is a fine reminder of her passion and brilliance. Rest in piece Louise - you achieved so much.

  12. by SHOWstudio .

    Joseph Lally's Soap Opera: The final episode!

    For the past months Joseph Lally has entertained and shocked us in equal measure with his Soap Opera series, taking fashion film to an extreme with his exploration of taboos from suicide to sexuality and fascism. Today we launch the finale, aptly entitled Money Shot.

    Lally's final episode takes tounge-in-cheek inspiration from the conventions of pornography, euphemistically censoring the sexual imagery with visual puns of dollar bills and fireworks. In his own words 'The money shot is that which arrests the eyes and seduces the senses.' Enjoy the filmmaker's farewell to Soap Opera, complete with his signature use of black and white and beautiful boys.

    Watch Money Shot now!

  13. by SHOWstudio .

    The more visible they make me...
    The latest from Nick Knight's archive

    'I like obsessiveness.' So begins Nick Knight explanation of the latest set of images in his month-long Kate Moss Tumblr curation. Counting down to the release of the second fashion film he ever made, the photographer is posting gifs from the same shoot, his first with the model, all the way back in 1995!

    The work is entitled The more visible they make me, the more invisible I become and features a 20 year old Kate Moss. It was shot on a security camera at a time when surveillance culture was just beginning and a topic of controversy. The medium and its subject combine to make a powerful statement about celebrity, voyerism and the fashion photographer. 

    Follow the curation, and stay tuned for the fashion film!

  14. by SHOWstudio .

    Enter The Elegant Universe now!

    Earlier this year, Nick Knight embarked on a live fashion shoot with the help of couture doyenne Lady Amanda Harlech who styled incredible S/S 14 haute couture pieces from the likes of Chanel, Valentino and Margiela, on model and physics scholar Alexia Wight

    The trio sought to create a mathematical universe out of each piece, resulting in a stunning, delicate fashion film, created with the help of SHOWstudio video editor Younji Ku. Ku combined 3D scans of each look with the editorial work - which will appear in print in V magazinealongside audio of Wight discussing the intricacies of physics.

    The project was about exploring different dimensions,' Knight explains. 'I wanted to juxtapose what I, the photographer saw, against what the computer saw. When I look at the couture I see certain things that are useful or beautiful to me, just like when the computer captures the couture it also sees something that's useful to it, but that view is totally different.'

    Explore The Elegant Universe now and be sure to delve into the process by re-visiting un-cut footage from the two day shoot!

  15. by SHOWstudio .

    Shaun Leane interview is up on-demand!

    The latest fashion legend to take a chair and open up for our In Fashion series was acclaimed avant-garde jeweller Shaun Leane

    In the candid interview, Leane went into detail about how he embarked on his career as a goldsmith, disclosing how his impeccable eye for detail and fascination with objects led him to progress quicker than most during his seven year apprenticeship at Hatton Garden. 'I was making tiaras by the age of eighteen,' Leane laughs. Leane went on open up about his long-time friend and collabotor Alexander McQueen whom he worked with for 10 years after first collaborating on the groundbreaking Highland Rape show in 1995. 

    This is an interview not to miss - watch the uncut on-demand footage now! 

    To see the work of Leane upclose, be sure to visit our upcoming SHOWstudio Shop exhibition, which opens to the public on 23 May 2014. The display will showcase eight bespoke pieces created exclusively by Leane, alongside inspirational works from Damien Hirst, Philip Treacy and more! 

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