– Tom McCarthy (interview)
Hello, I am super excited to finally have got my offer from Lincoln University to study Conservation and Restoration this September and it’s got me all riled up and productive and I really want to be doing as much as possible. That’s when I found this three week workshop in Puglia, Italy…
The Twelfth Rose, by Mary Skeaping, 1969
This is a recreation of a costume worn by Louis XIV in 1653 in Le Ballet Royal de la Nuit. It was worn in Mary Skeaping’s ballet The Twelfth Rose, a reconstruction of Le Ballet Royal, and was designed by David Walker. The weight of the costume would halp the performer to recreate the stately manner of 17th century court dances.
PLAY MASby Mustapha Matura, 1974
‘Play mas’ is a Trinidadian phrase meaning carnival. the Decoration of this costume incorporates symbolic images like the dove of peace alongside a plethora of ‘found’ objects. These include coin, buttons, bottle tops, budgerigar mirrors and bells, which glitter and move with the black and gold fringe and hanging bobbles
Smokedress by Anouk Wipprecht
The Smokedress is based on a 630-gram wireless and wearable smoke system. The dresstriggers the attention by flirting through blinking lights, but covers in smoke as soon as the visitor approaches. It functions as a protection shield; projected as a parasitic instrument hosted on the body. The effect fades, shifts, confuses, distracts and leaves room for error.
Pseudomorphs by Anouk Wipprecht
A self inking dress, consists of a neck brace and electronic back piece which includes a sensory system. As soon as a visitor approaches, the dress starts to bleedink.
Like Living Organisms by Local Androids
Like Living Organisms; abreathing artificial skin garment with pulsing veins. The pulse increases when you approach and the neck piecedeflates on touch as a sign of trust.
The Holy Dress by Melissa Coleman and Leonie Smelt
The Holy Dress punishes its wearer by an electric shock when a lie is told. By wearing the dress a person chooses to become a martyr for the truth.
In classical ballets like Swan Lake, where the ballerina wears the traditional tutu, it is the costumes worn by the non-dancing or walking on roles which help establish time and place in the mind of the audience. This beautifully detailed, yet theatrical, headdress, from the Sadler’s Wells (now Royal) Ballet’s 1943 production, perfectly suggests a medieval setting, while still belonging to a fantasy world.
The designer of the production, Leslie Hurry, was relatively new to ballet design, having made his reputation as a surrealist painter. This made him an ideal choice to create the world of Swan Lake, where the realistic costumes of the court anchored the more flamboyantly dream-like sets and the basic unrealistic dance costumes. His designs were so successful that, with various reworkings, they were still in use thirty years later. By the 1970s, however, he had had enough and pleaded with the Royal Ballet never to ask him to design or revise the costumes again.
am Gopal was one of the most important dancers of the 20th century and certainly one of the most exotic theatre performers. He was a major figure in the revival of Indian dance and his spectacular theatrical presentations introduced it to audiences both in Asia and the West. He was proud of the authenticity of his music, costuming and style, shrewdly tailored his presentations to Western audiences, using modern theatrical techniques and spectacular presentation.
This costume was worn by Gopal in The Eagle Dance, (1939) one of his most famous solos; in it he portrayed Garuda, the sacred golden eagle of Lord Vishnu, whose mission was to destroy the Naga (snake) people, for which Vishnu rewarded him with immortality. The costume is made of gold leather, cut into ‘feathers’ and lotus shapes, trimmed with brilliant blue, and under the stage lights would have shone with a sun-like radiance entirely fitted to a servant of a god.
Such costumes were expensive, some were insured for as much as £25,000, and they had to be carefully looked after. Thus, the wings and headdress for this costume had specially designed carrying cases to protect them on the long journeys between engagements.