Backstage: 1990’s London Fashion Week | Love, Line, Joshua and Jane

Opening First Friday

Apr 1 2016

12:00 am

Backstage: 1990’s London Fashion Week | Love, Line, Joshua and Jane

Apr 1 2016 - Apr 30 2016

Opening – First Friday
April 1, 2016
6 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Artist Reception Party – Third Friday
April 15, 2016
6 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Showing in the first gallery:

1990’s London Fashion Week.
At the Bit Factory Gallery – April 1st – 15th, 2016.

A rare insight into the 1990’s London fashion scene.

Artist Gary Wallis.
Exhibition by Mario Abela: Creative.

ALEXANDER McQueen – Backstage – The Early Shows :

Photographer Gary Wallis first met Lee McQueen, later known as Alexander McQueen, while they were both studying at Central Saint Martins, London.  Their long-term collaboration began when Lee asked Gary to shoot his MA graduation collection ‘Jack the Ripper Stalks His Victims’.

Before McQueen’s 1994 Fall collection ‘Banshee’, Lee requested Wallis to make a short ‘home movie’ and also to photograph ‘Banshee’ backstage.

For McQueen’s next four shows: ‘The Birds’, ‘Highland Rape’, ‘The Hunger’ and ‘Dante’, Wallis was again given backstage access to take pictures. This mainly unseen library has been hidden away in filing cabinets for over 20 years until very recently. These beautiful portraits provide a true insider’s view into a rare and special moment in time, as McQueen pushed the boundaries of convention and rose up as the rebel king of British fashion and ultimately world fashion.

This intimate set is a sample of images published as a collection in a litho printed hardback and is a must have for any discerning lover of McQueen and fashionista’s alike.

London Fashion Week –

A small selection of assorted fashion portraits  taken backstage during London Fashion Week.   These pictures were  chosen  from a forth coming book and exhibition, including backstage Antonio Berardi and Matthew Williamson shows. Of course the 1990’s fashion scene could not be complete without the “super models”- Kate and Naomi, and a little splash of
Strike a pose……

Mario Abela
ph: 303 718 6873
em: info@marioabela.net

Copyright : All copyright remains with Gary Wallis.

Showing in the second gallery:

Love, Line, Joshua and Jane

I love clear arguments for independent witty women, heart touching comic satire, and the promise of happy endings. When attempting to describe my love for Austen’s prose, I find her own words encapsulate my feelings precisely. “I cannot fix on the hour, or the spot, or the look or the words, which laid the foundation. It is too long ago. I was in the middle before I knew that I had begun.” (Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice, 1813)

These modern, energetic portraits are my homage to Jane Austen, an author with a profound understanding of human nature captured in ever graceful, sometimes snarky, and uncommonly humorous

I emulate that prose with character studies that are graceful and chivalrous, yet strong and enigmatic. Austen’s characters are both believable and archetypal. The size and color choice in each study attempts to emulate Austen’s ability to reflect her character’s primal nature as well as their emotional makeup. The color, figure and abstract compositional qualities should immerse the viewer in the feelings of the character and the atmosphere of their novel.

The figures in my paintings evoke a nostalgia for a more gracious, slower, more courteous world, but the classical poses and costumes remind the viewer of this narrow, more restrictive existence. The attire and positions of the figures were inspired by the work of Sir Joshua Reynolds. As a contemporary of Austen’s during the Georgian to Regency era, I knew I could count on his large body of work for the historical accuracy of the apparel and pose.

The abstract qualities of my work aim to echo the fluidity of the narrator’s words, the character’s speech pattern, putting the viewer into the character’s mind. The paintings use light and contrast as a definition of the rock solid morality of the time, the sharp delineation reflecting Jane’s sharp observations of people and social situations.

I apply indirect color in washes using acrylic gloss medium, sometimes one at a time, sometimes two or three at a time, to a black acrylic grisaille layer. I use black to create starkness and contrast, as I find it does not distract from the evocative nature of color. I use indirect color in dripping, abstract washes to compositionally challenge myself as well as challenge the viewer’s ideas on modern portraiture.

Jane brought us social satire without causing us to lose faith in humanity. Her characters, and by extension, this body of work, are asking the largest questions in the human experience: ” Will I ever be loved?” “Will I ever find happiness?” Ms. Austen promises a happy ending; she helps us hope a little. It is my great wish that you find this hope in my art.

­Amy Lee Lummus