Exhibition Inspiration: A Recent Round-up

Welcome to my summer round-up of the virtual gallery tour

the journal series highlighting some amazing, thought-provoking or just generally fascinating exhibitions and galleries that made a lasting impression on me. As a trend forecaster and designer, I’m grateful for my diligent photo-taking, always sure to capture for a future visual record.

This post covers Katharina Grosse’s colourful installation at Hamburger Bahnhof Berlin, Ganni’s 202020 exhibition for Copenhagen Fashion Week and the highly anticipated Mary Quant exhibition at the newly reopened V&A Dundee.

Katharina Grosse – It Wasn’t Us | Hamburger Bahnhof Berlin

Taken place in the iconic former Hamburg-to-Berlin train station, Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart, German artist Katharina Grosse’s new installation “It Wasn’t Us” opened on 14th June, just as Berlin was easing out of its lockdown. Bringing some much needed colourful joy to the city, Katharina’s signature vibrant style took over the museum, using her kaleidoscopic aesthetics to create an expressive, care-free and giant installation designed in-situ for museum’s “Historic Hall”.

“I paint my way out of a building”

Katherina Grosse 2020

Katharina’s indoor/outdoor installation transforms the vast empty space of the Historic Hall, utilising the often overlooked industrial outdoor space as an extension of her canvas. Her haphazard and accidental approach to painting brings a sense of movement and life to the Bahnhof’s backyard, encouraging visitors to explore the infinite colour combinations she creates.

Truly unique textures and colour inspiration wherever you focus your eye.

Katharina Grosse – It Wasn’t Us is on until January 10, 2021

GANNI 202020 Exhibition | CPH Fashion Week

Opened exclusively for Copenhagen Fashion Week’s hybrid digital/physical event in August, Ganni embraced this new opportunity by rejecting a traditional catwalk in favour of the socially distanced exhibition, “202020”. Using the past few months as an overall influence, Ganni collaborated with multiple female artists to create this event.

Check out my personal highlights below.

Highlights from 202020 include New York based artist and knitter Hayley Blomquist‘s chunky hand-knitted installation (above left). The wall hanging was created by recycling vintage Levis and repurposed Ganni denim to showcase the possibilities of using offcuts/waste fabrics for new art and fashion.

Another highlight was the poetry and thoughts of New York-based journalist and public speaker Marjon Carlos who wrote and created a spoken essay for the exhibition (above middle). Inspired by all events of 2020 so far, Marjon’s poignant words spoke of tragedy, jealousy, joy and hope for a post-Covid world.

My favourite from the exhibition was the dynamic group photo “Collage 202020” by London based photographer Rosie Marks (above right). Shot in the early stages of the UK’s lockdown easing, Rosie invited each model to be individually photographed in her garden. Rosie then printed out and created cardboard cutouts of each woman, to be displayed as a “group photo” in the exhibition.

The 202020 edition of Ganni’s Kiosk was also displayed, showing past collections that had been given a makeover by over-embroidering, printing, dyeing or customising to create a new take on their archive pieces.

For their first venture into the rental market, Ganni also collaborated with the denim brand Levis to create a 3 piece range of up-cycled denim garments (above left shirts and slouch jeans). Displaying them with a corresponding QR code, visitors had the opportunity to sign up for a rental slot, see who else has rented them and links to styling tips, creating a hype around the mini-collection. The garments themselves feature several clever design details, like the double waist fastening on the jeans, to allow the renter to experiment and style however they choose.

Finishing the exhibition with a beacon of hope, Ganni collaborated with Stockholm based artist Maria “Decida” Wahlberg to create a short dance film under the title “THRESHOLD”. Wearing designs from the Ganni archive, four Ganni girls were filmed dancing (all improvised, no choreography).

Click here for the short film – so joyous to watch!

Mary Quant | V&A Dundee

The Mary Quant exhibition at the V&A Dundee holds a special place in my heart as it is currently on display in my hometown. The exhibition covers the expansive work of Mary Quant, from her early days right through to her lasting impression on the fashion industry today.

See below for a visual round-up of my exhibition highlights.

Mary Quant – the influential fashion designer who revolutionised the 60s with her “working girl” fashion aesthetics the era is known for today.

“Fashion, as we knew it, is over; people wear now exactly what they feel like wearing.”

Mary Quant
Mary Quant at V&A Dundee is on until January 17, 2021

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