The art of butterfly collecting or 'lepidoptery' is well over 300 years old and holds its own place in European cultural history. The concept of preserving the exotic or unusual in 'curisoity cabinets' is a pre cursor to the development of our modern idea of the Museum. Artefacts which tell a story are boxed up and put on display to explain the subject or historical discourse they belong to.
Alister Mackie has playfully and very cleverly utilised this aesthetic to describe a part of his own history. From butterfly to 'Black Tie', this piece showcases a number of bow ties that he has collected throughout his career. Bow ties from established menswear brands are showcased alongside equally beautiful ties by unknown designers in a wunderkammer for this fashion staple. A geometric Austin Reed tie, a silk tie by Lanvin, and a tie from the Louis Vuitton on the Champs Elysees is neatly placed amongst a vintage American tie, a black velvet tie from the 1970s, and other bow ties of varied designs from the middle of the century. Collected from flea markets and designer boutiques in London and Paris, 'Black Tie' is a hand-selected display, each pinned and labelled with scientific precision.
SHOWstudio Shop was delighted to show Mackie's first 'Black Tie' piece as part of our Blackwhite exhibition last year, and now he has delved back into his collection to produce three more. All are available at SHOWstudio.com.