One of those iconic zeitgeist fashion moments: HUSSEIN CHALAYAN’s AUTUMN / WINTER 2000 show final. This fashion show bordered on a 1970s “happening”: four models wearing grey shift-dresses approached these chairs, removed the covers and then put them onto their bodies. The last model wearing a similar dress delicately stepped into the middle of the table, lifted it up and transformed it into a skirt. Not a quirky show element, but a risky statement. The show was inspired by refugees of war, people forced to flee their homes, carrying their worldly possessions on their backs. Knowing about Chalayan Turkish Cypriot roots and the conflict in the area in the 60s and 70s, his inspiration had a personal resonance, it often does with artists. But great creativity lives on and keeps on becoming more relevant in time. Given the very recent crisis in Afganistan and the to be expected huge flow of refugees that had to leave everything behind from home, this video is more that relevant and makes us think.
Chalayan has earned a reputation for being London’s cerebral designer by drawing on themes as disparate as architecture, aerodynamics, space and religion, always marked by his unique talent for combining philosophical ideals with wearable clothes.