Alber Elbaz: Cameras changed fashion
Alber Elbaz's latest exhibition reflects how the camera changes fashion.
The Lanvin creative director is currently holding Alber Elbaz/Lanvin Manifesto at the Maison Européenne de la Photographie museum in Paris. The display is photography-centric and features 400 images taken by seven photographers in five different settings, all documenting Alber's design-and-fitting process for shows.
"I’m a fashion designer, not a photographer, so rather than documenting, I wanted to show the relationship between the camera and fashion, how the camera changed fashion after illustration, how it purified fashion, but also how fashion has changed after social media," he explained to W magazine. "What does photography do for us? We’re living in a time when we document the moment rather than live the moment. I wanted to understand, for example, why women, when they’re trying on clothes now want to see how the photo looks more than how clothes feel on the body."
The space is split into sections, including a black room full of big screens and a white room, dubbed the "laboratory". It's in here that guests can soak up photos of fabrics being turned into clothes.
Putting the exhibition together wasn't without its struggles though.
"The most difficult thing for us was creating the passage between the black front and the white in the back. Nothing worked. A passage is meant to be a passage. It’s not a place where you stay. It’s a place you pass by. So what can you show in a place where people aren’t looking because they’re just passing by?" Alber mused. "We put big illustrations to show the passage between an abstract idea and reality. That’s what clothes are. You give birth to an idea in a sketch. Sometimes it’s a dream and sometimes it’s a nightmare."
Alber Elbaz/Lanvin Manifesto is on now and runs until October 31 2015.