Years ago, when I interviewed the fabulous concept-car designer Laurens Van Den Acker - about the customizable GloCar concept vehicle (right) he had designed for Ford, he shared an interesting insight I've never forgotten. His father had been an architect and had made the point to him that as cities age, they don't become more homogenous and the same; rather, they diversify into an increasingly colorful array of ethnic neighborhoods, distinctive areas and specialized niches. In short, older cities morph into complex and individualized mosaics. And Van Den Acker was of the mind that the same underlying impulse applies to our cars - rather than everyone jetting around in the same flying vehicle in "the future," we will instead continue to take full advantage of developments in technology to express our individuality.
It's just the way we humans roll.
The designer, known for his ninja-like ability to juxtapose the high with the low in a way that is actually wearable, curated this show with Jutta Kraus, head of his Paris-based studio team, as a "forecast of the fashion experience in the 22nd century." Using climate change and (possible) impending ecological disaster as a backdrop, the pair present an engaging protest to the "uniformity of consumerism in the 21st century" using video, photography, and displays of "ephemera and objects." The resulting "tableaux vivant presentations" reflect what Van Den Acker's dad long ago had his finger on the pulse of: the diversity of the global metropolis. "Bernhard Willhelm 3000 is an experiment," adds MOCA, "and through the emotive qualities of the work in the exhibition, it also serves as an opening to a dialogue between art, fashion, and consumerism."
Bernhard Willhelm 3000: When Fashion Shows The Danger Then Fashion Is The Danger at MOCA Pacific Design Center is on display through May 17, 2015. Info & tix at MOCA.org.
(MOCA exhibition photos by Brian Forrest)
- Lesley Scott
NOTE: The aggressive "fight" feel of this endeavor is very congruent with the vibe of the Apocalytical fashion tribe. For more of my posts and podcasts about the Apocalytical tribe, CLICK HERE. To learn more about each of fashion's four mega-tribes that I track, START HERE.