We often see projects that balance on the thin line between design and art, but its not that often we see fashion projects that do the same. Silvia B’s Skinover collection however, shows us just that.
Known for her sculptures which play on the idea of manipulating perfect features, for this exhibition B. chose to present her Skinover collection; a series of long, elegant lambskin gloves painted to the same colour as her skin. “The gloves were originally part of a different project”, says B.
The gloves had been made for a mannequin sculpture, completely covered in leather ‘skin’ but “to put on a second skin and explore the sensation of wearing somebody else’s scars or freckles opened a new way of thinking. Developing a line of wearable sculptures would be making a connection with fashion again.” A study she had dropped at the academy in favour of sculpture.
“And now fashion goes much further than just clothes and hairdo. Our skin has become a tool too. We can be browner or whiter or younger, we can have bigger lips, Asian eyes, smaller ears, tattooed make-up, the possibilities to customize our faces seem endless.”
The gloves each have their own individual signature, whether that be pierced, scarred, tattooed or freckled. Painted in a pale pink, close to B’s own skincolour, the gloves are vulnerable yet through their interventions become sometimes tough or even disfigured.
“I wanted the gloves to be as elegant as possible to create the best platform for the interventions. Actually this goes for all my work, the sculptures, drawings, installations, I try to make them as beautiful and as real as possible to lure the viewer to come closer and stay a bit.”
B’s sculptures often present the image of hybrid beings: between man and animal, doll and robot, confusing gender and age. “Their disquieting aesthetic challenge our conceptions of beauty and normality.”
At KIASMA B’s Les Plus Beaux sculpture series is also on show; a group of young children dressed all in white, wearing masks and holding their toys. There are references to elite sports, fairytales, horror movies, street culture and art history. Special attention has been paid to the various outfits worn by the ‘dolls’ which are often formal wear combined with sports attire.
Camouflage will be on show until 7 October 2012 at KIASMA
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