On Saturday I attended the fourth annual Art of Fashion event, held at the Timken Museum of Art, located inside Balboa Park. Having attended a few lackluster events in town featuring the designs of local fashion students recently, I wasn’t holding my breath for anything amazing, despite noting that my fairy godmother (she just doesn’t know it yet!) Zandra Rhodes is the honorary chair. But I grabbed Leslie, a dear friend I have known since I was fourteen (fourteen!) in town from San Francisco as my plus one, mumbling something about how you just never know with these types of things – desperately hoping for something on the other side of hokey. Well my dears…
I have never been so thrilled and excited and proud to be a part of the San Diego fashion community.
The Timken displays American, Dutch, Flemish, French, Italian, and Spanish paintings, plus Russian icons. For the Art of Fashion event, students and graduates of Fashion Careers College are assigned a painting from the museum’s permanent collection and tasked with creating a handmade gown or other sartorially-inspired interpretation of their painting. The students work over the better part of the year in preparation for the unveiling.
And yes, the event was swanky and there was amazing creme brulee, but what was brilliant about the execution of this event was the experience of strolling through the various rooms (to Parisian gypsy music no less) discovering models, styled to the nines in incredible couture, standing in front of the paintings they were meant to emulate. And right there next to that visual feast – the designer responsible for blowing your mind.What an amazing opportunity to speak directly to fifteen incredible talents, to learn directly from them about what elements of the painting drove their creation. And, the up close and personal access wasn’t limited to the designer, attendees could get up close, and sometimes even touch the garments. Touch the pretties?! It was heaven.
And now, I am excited to share with you some more information about the event from Fashion Show Coordinator Tanya McAnear and then directly from the designers themselves.