FASHION SHOW: Keep those fashion catalogs — they might be contenders for an exhibition.
“The Ephemera of Fashion,” a show set to open at the International Festival of Fashion and Photography in Hyères, France — which kicks off on Thursday — will include about 20 catalogs from fashion houses including Versace, Issey Miyake, Yohji Yamamoto and Dries Van Noten, from the late Seventies through the first decade of the 21st century.
“These catalogs are creation items. While they have a commercial vocation, they have been pushing the boundaries of creation and innovation,” said the exhibition’s curator François Cam-Drouhin, who put together the display from loans of private collectors, including from one “who kept more than 1,000 [catalogs] over three decades.”
Standouts include a 1987 catalog from Gianni Versace lensed by Richard Avedon featuring Christy Turlington on its cover; one from Issey Miyake shot by Irving Penn from 1989, and one from 1998 from Yohji Yamamoto done in collaboration with Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin with Michaël Amzalag and Mathias Augustyniak, the graphic design duo behind M/M.
“These catalogs done every season aren’t typically for sale but generally have a wide distribution, through stores, brands’ partners, etcetera,” noted Cam-Drouhin, the cofounder of Tailor Books, a pop-up bookshop specializing in rare books that is also partly in charge of the book selection at Paris concept store The Broken Arm. He called the catalogs “collectors’ items” that become less significant in purely digital form.
“The Ephemera of Fashion,” in the garden of the landmark Villa Noailles is one of the 12 exhibitions staged in Hyères to coincide with the festival, which runs until April 25. (Some of the exhibits are slated to remain open through May 22.)
Other showcases include “Work in Progress,” an initiatory course on the Paco Rabanne fashion house. (The Puig-owned label is the festival’s guest of honor at the 31st edition, and its creative director for women’s wear Julien Dossena is president of the fashion jury, as reported.)
Another exhibit is dedicated to William Klein, whose film “Who Are You, Polly Maggoo?” on the behind the scenes of fashion is celebrating its 50th anniversary. Klein is the president of the photography jury this year.
There’s also an exhibit on the film by artist Xavier Veilhan called “Vent Moderne” and one on Greek-born, Paris-based photographer Evangelia Kranioti’s photographs for Barrie, the Chanel-owned cashmere house.
Charlotte Chesnais and Pierre Hardy are among fashion jury members this year, while Jean-Paul Goude and Gareth Pugh serve on jury duty for the photography competition.