As I grew up, art was always the highlight of my school week. I adored becoming acquainted with new inspiration. There are more artists than I can possibly name that crossed my path during high school, but then, there are also the ones who really made an impact.
Robert Rauschenberg, who fuelled my obsession with mixed-media, layering and collage; something that has crossed over into my home life and also wardrobe. Christo, who lured with me in with his draping of fabric over buildings, hinting at a big reveal. Chuck Close, with his incredible photorealist eye for detail. Yves Klein, his colour blue is now forever imprinted on my memory and is recalled every time I see something that matches that hue. Barbara Kruger, who made me realise the power of being a woman brave enough to make a statement. Michael Landy, the man who threw away everything he owned just to create art - sometimes it’s about sacrifice.
Joseph Cornell, who created mini-museums, boxes filled with beautiful found objects; sometimes it’s the inexpensive mementos that make you smile. Marc Quinn, the guy who shocked my whole art class when we learned that he’d sculpted a human head out of his own blood - now that’s dedication.
Gerhard Richter, made me fall in love with using paint, not just for colour but also for texture. I spent hours trying to replicate artists like John Piper, using sticks and Indian ink whilst attempting to match his moody hues and scratchy lines. Cindy Sherman, for not being scared of turning the camera on herself to address a multitude of issues affecting the modern world. And Cy Twombly, for making me view the seasons in a whole new light through the delicate scrawl of pencil on canvas and for making me read between the lines.
But the artist that came to mind upon spying the Painters Palette shirt dress by Kelly Love was without a doubt Jackson Pollock. The king of Action Painting. Wearing this oversized button-through dress, with its batwing sheer panelled-sleeves made me feel like I could have (read: should have) been perched in Pollock’s studio, pouring over his work and giving Lee Krasner a run for her money. However, that woman was a saint. I’m not sure whether I would have done a better job of nurturing his artistic talent.
I’m always excited to see what new beauties Young British Designers are about to bestow on the fashion world. My recent encounter made me appreciate just how much art really has inspired fashion over the decades.