by Penny Martin .

The Enigma of the Fashion Object

No, it's not just a man in a stretchy sweatshirt. It's Erwin Wurm in a 'position'. One of his spellbinding '59 Positions' (1992) to be precise, which was screened as part of another thoughtful installment of the FFF programme at London's ICA this evening. Whereas the festival so far has concentrated on features and narrative, tonight objects were the main focus, with bowler hats, stockings, corsets and gloves all receiving individual attention. Highlights included Méliès' hilarious (which is saying something for a silent film made in 1900) 'Going to Bed Under Difficulties' and Jirí Barta's ingenious film/animation 'The Extinct World of Gloves' (1982). It was sheer fashion-film bliss to observe that the common factor uniting eleven film-makers spanning one hundred years was that they all delighted in experimenting with the idiosyncracies of motion image-making itself to explore the endlessly fascinating 'private world of clothes'. Reverse techniques, solarisation, surreal animation and cheeky editing tricks were all much in evidence.

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