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Fashions and Scenes

Regina Möller

Fashion is a complex realm that goes beyond apparel, shifting trends or the picking-over of past styles. It exists in dialogue with architecture, interior design, the urban setting, tradition, culture, and art forms such as sculpture, portraiture, performance art and film. It makes statements – consciously and unconsciously – that give rise to questions of cultural, gender-specific and everyday interest. It occupies a place between theory and practice. Fashion is simultaneously text and textile, concept and cut, function and form. It can simply be worn or it can be perceived as an extreme statement. It plays a central role in the creation of identity and the process of self-dramatization.

The project title of the HUB Fashions and Scenes is Seam / Transition. The idea behind the seam is to identify tears in the fabric of society and history, in order to then stitch them back together again. The seam remains visible. This hub tracks seams and highlights various scenarios involving fashion. The focus and starting point of Seam is East and West Berlin in the era shortly before and after the fall of the Berlin wall – the transition. The Transition section debunks the idea of fashion as purely a matter of style, viewing it as the crystallization of multiple contexts and historically changing milieus. The central themes of the show are everyday clothing and workwear in former East Germany, and the incorporation of work clothing in Western fashions. Further attention is paid to socialist norms in the East and the cult of the label in the West.

The HUB Fashions and Scenes does not present clothing as an exhibit without a body. Rather, it takes busts of female and male mannequins and dresses them in diverse informational material. In so doing, it addresses the issue of clothing as a signifier and communicator. For the exhibition, tailor’s dummies are stood along the lines of a seam pattern, criss-crossed with hems – the transitions. The use of these dummies as information sculptures addresses the crossover points between art, fashion and the everyday.