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Movin' Out: MoMA's PS1 Highlights Art and Fashion Mash-Up


This weekend, MoMA's Long Island City outpost PS1 held a special event featuring some of the buzziest names in art and fashion as they combined forces for a special event. The event, entitled MOVE!, was curated by V Magazine's Cecilia Dean and fashion writer David Colman, and brought the New York scenesters together in hoards as they rubbed elbows with each other, sometimes in very close quarters, to take in all the visual delights.

The Halloween weekend lent itself to the whimsical and free-spirited vibe that overtook the MoMA space, leaving us to wonder if some people were in costume or just eccentric fashion-y types. Dean and Colman did a tremendous job of pulling in hot names from both metiers to present kinetic and interactive collaborations in the form of performance or installation.

While a few of the fourteen works fell a little flat, there were many standouts. Terrence Koh and Italo Zucchelli's piece, for example, was moody and intense and certainly tinged with creepiness -- synthesized via modest means. Attendees were asked to enter a smokey, dimly lit room and immediately assaulted with the slowly-moving scene of two figures, completely covered in an aluminum-like material, moving slowly towards and away from each other. Totally weird and spooky.

Another highlight was Cynthia Rowley's installation with Olaf Bruening. Without being pretentious, it spoke volumes of the transformative power of fashion, but in a fun, silly way that lacked any sort of affectation. You found yourself walking down a long corridor with a hanging rod that had dozens of denim dresses, shirts and pants, all with unfinished hems. Then, you're taken to a room where models were trying the pieces on. Next, you were led into a third room, where Bruening gingerly poured a bucket of paint onto the nymph-like ladies, to the delight of the crowd (seriously, who doesn't want to see a model get covered in paint?). Then, as you exited the installation, you see all the denim clothing, still wet and freshly doused in wild patterns and colors, hanging on a rack. New, one-of-a-kind works, created right before your eyes.

Wunderkind Marc Jacobs employed his usual cheeky brand of knowing humor for his collaboration with artist Rob Pruitt. Once you walk through a room of standing mirrors (hm, a vanity theme? How droll.) you enter another room where a curt woman immediately scolds you. "You're late," she said hurriedly,"I can't work with models who are running late. We're ready for you, please make your way down the runway." Before you know it, you're walking down a long, narrow hallway towards a mirror, 'modeling' as you go. When you step off the runway, you move into a dark room where your walk is digitally superimposed over video of a runway show, making you the star you were always destined to be. Leave it to Marc to infuse his installation piece with some subversive humor and witty fun.

Overall, the work seemed to be a huge success and, due to the fact it was only shown over two days, the museum reaped the reward of having tons of people, many quite fabulous, stalking the halls. Hopefully, this is just the beginning of work like this from Dean and Colman, as this was a fun way to twist the junction of fashion and art on its ear.

All photos courtesy of Michael Leonhard/PS1

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