Paolo Topy Rossetto Photographer - Dress

DRESS 2014

The window of a ‘great fashion designer’ at night: this image taken during a night-time stroll at first appears banal, but it possesses surprising powers of suggestion.

The discarnate, ghost-like appearance of the garment, a white dress, dominates. The atmosphere is at once precious and sophisticated, but also sombre. The garment is exaggeratedly staged and becomes an independent object in its own right, dissociated from its primary function: to clothe. To clothe in order to protect but also to ‘make a statement and an assertion’ about the wearer’s ‘self’, making it easy for another to identify them instantly, thus facilitating an exchange. In fact, the human here appears to have been strangely relegated to the background. In reality, everything is frozen, cold and calculated. Ultimately, the human body this dress is intended for is only a walking mannequin to be used for other purposes. Women and their bodies are so called objects of all manner of attention; they are ‘exalted’. But have they not simply served as an incidental excuse for the designer’s own selfish and arrogant introspection and been cynically taken hostage by the powerful, mercantile strategies of the large financial corporations that today ‘dictate’ fashion?

Yves Peltier

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