Fashion & Its Frame: A.C.R.E Projects
Photo from Melissa Araujo
Why is it that you choose the frame to fit the painting, but fashion collections are chosen to fit the show? What do you do when you’ve got a vision for your work, but not the right arena for exhibition?
You create your own platform.
That’s how A.C.R.E. arose. The project, whose acronymic title stands for A Collaborative Runway Exhibition, desires to “allow [artists] to present their work in their desired light, true to their aesthetics.” They value the artistry and authenticity behind fashion, not just the clothes themselves. A.C.R.E. put on a small show shortly after fashion week to show us how it's done.
I had the honor of attending this show to view some underground Vancouver fashion. Here, I present to you ACRE Projects.
Melissa Araujo’s self-titled collection was truly minimalist. Monochromatic aesthetics and streamlined shapes were perfectly constructed. The pieces were wearable, but not commonplace. They were current, but not trendy. It was at the same time very linear and sensual, like a woman with her hair pulled back.
Le Monde Gris, a menswear collection by Dave Briker, brought a little more color to the runway but stayed dark. Leather pants and moto boots were paired with imaginative jackets, dip-dyed sweaters and shirts that played on a balance between laid-back and high end. As the designer intended, nothing was black nor white; no piece was wholly masculine nor feminine, casual nor formal. I was blown away by the shirt-turned-shirt-turned-shirtdress. Amazeballs.
The final collection was Lunqs + Qidney by Franz Patrick Cordova Albana, an artist who strives to “create unconventional garments for the tribes who do not follow the traditional system of trends.” His style-over-fashion mentality is apparent in the collection, which features intricately draped soft grey fabric, jewelry made of household objects, and blindfolds.
In addition to showing some exceptional work, A.C.R.E. embodied a truly artisanal approach to fashion design that was refreshing after Fashion Week season. It reminds us not to remove the collections from the designer’s vision, it recognizes how crucial the platform is to the work shown. It raises the question: How can we ever expect ten collections to fit the same frame?
All photos by Nicola Storey