I often focus on problematics of whiteness in fashion. It’s time to affirm white-the-color itself. Last year, I attended a wonderful fashion exhibition dedicated to its stylistic potential. Art En Blanc toured three cities in Spain (Castellon, Valencia and Alicante) and featured only local designers with varying degrees of domestic and international exposure. I experienced it at Sant Miquel dels Reis, the spectacular site of Valencia Public Library. Here is my isms-free pics-only report. ¡Vamonos!
There were plenty of reclining brides… from “a classic” Alejandro Resta to Daluna with exceptional embroidery. Florals galore from décor in Mario Coello and Suite Studio to a belt-like bouquet in Higinio Mateu to Botticelli petals in Bibian Blue. Menswear got a shout-out from a Paco Roca tuxedo and Sebastian Chavarriaga with his 12 Monkeys vibe. In other Hollywood allusions, Ulises Merida made me think of Angelina Jolie in Tourist: awful movie, awesome glamor. The more practical looks ranged from office-friendly designs by Miguel Vizcaino to a Little White Dress by Hortensia Maeso and an architectural top by Luis Rocamora. Towards the avant-garde end of the spectrum, Visori with a Bjork-proof look and Yvan Andreu with high-concept piece “for unconscious minds”. The devil (and style) is in the details such as the exquisitely buttoned sleeves by Eugenio Loarce or the headgear by MANÉMANÉ. The idea of fashion as living sculpture was evident in the works by Benavente Atelier and Juan Vidal. My favorite dress (and this post’s cover image) came from Alala Costura. Unfortunately, the brand seems to have been discontinued 😦
Art En Blanc is a solid example of support for the local fashion industry & community. Instead of chasing the next “global” blockbuster, organizers put the spotlight on plethora of domestic talent and options. It has generated generous regional media coverage and, hopefully, translated into direct sales and other opportunities for these brands. I pledge to follow up with a few designers I found most intriguing. Stay tuned!