Oh my God. I watched a documentary on Netflix about the Met Gala and there were tons of shots of historical Chinese dresses and dresses by modern Western (elite) designers inspired by Chinese culture — as seen through representation in Western film. Oh my God.
The dresses and the materials were extraordinary. But there was also “Andrew,” the curator of the costume and fashion department at the Met. When we see a photo of him taken at age seventeen, we hear him state his life’s passion at the time: to become the head of the costume and fashion department at the Met.
If I had been true to myself, I’d have become a costume designer.
When I was finishing high school, I took steps to apply to Marimekko to become an intern and Fortuny was an early idol, so the seeds of what I do today were planted early. But I was so ashamed of being gay; I could not comfortably pursue my passions.
Thank God I have the time and resources with which to dabble in my passion now. Seeing that film on Netflix has me raring to go again. Today, I am going to Dressew to see if they have cheap mannequins and what kind of faux pearls they have.
I want to embroider on paper. I want to smock paper. I want to do beadwork on paper. I want to weave with it. And I want to make lace with it.
I love my idea about a show with text — “with text” being the most important part. The text, in my mind anyway, will tell people who see my show that I’m not pretending to be an accomplished paper sculpture maker. The dresses are just objects. The text — at least this is my hope/plan —will make you laugh, move you or make you think and you’ll realize that the text is as important as the dress.
And if there’s a play, too, so much the better — then the dresses are props.
I am relieved to note that there’s not a molecule in my body that wants to wear any of my creations.
Stills of the Met's China: Through the Looking Glass