A close dialogue between fashion and art with the creations by Antonio Marras and Lucia Pescador
Text by: Gianmarco Gronchi
What is fashion for? To get dressed? Certainly, but not only. To seduce? Also. To amaze? Perhaps. But today the most intimate meaning of fashion as clothing is perhaps creating spaces for dialogue, tangencies between different forms of art. And this is exactly what Antonio Marras’ winter 2022 collection, presented in Milan during the last Fashion Week, is. A world where clothing meets art and performance in a provocative and sometimes contradictory way. A poetic and overt dialogue with other disciplines, where fashion is not an ancillary servant, but a major player in the concert of modern arts.
The title of the collection, Oci Ciornie, comes from the 1987 film directed by Nikita Sergeevič Michalkov and inspired by some of Anton Čechov’s stories. To present it, the Circolo Marras in Via Cola di Rienzo became a stage where the union of different artistic fields took shape. Instead of a fashion show, Marras opted for a performance to present his creations, in an happy creative confusion atmosphere, in which actors and performers were free to interact with the public. There is a subversion, a theatricalisation of clothing that also implies a questioning of the art boundaries.
The reciprocal encroachment of everyday life and the performance dimension finds a poetic interpretation in the silent work of artist Lucia Pescador, who represents the hidden web of links between art, fashion and everyday life through drawings traced on two large blackboards during the performance. Lucia Pescador, who has always been interested not only in Soviet culture but also in the discard, the laceration, the minimal gesture that gives life to new meanings, represents the emotional counterpoint to a world – the one desired by Marras – that focus on on the action and on the use of the body as an instrument of seduction and dialogue.
During the performance, we were able to get some of Lucia Pescador’s impressions about art and creativity today.
Gianmarco Gronchi: How did this collaboration with Antonio Marras start?
Lucia Pescador: Antonio and I have known each other for more than ten years. We have done many things together, we have collaborated many times. I think we share a common spirit with Antonio. Antonio is a genius, a great creative person who manages to transport us into a dreamlike, fairytale world with his fashion. I am very happy to work with him, even though this day is very demanding for everyone, especially the performers, who will be busy all day.
Gianmarco Gronchi: You started working as an artist in the 1960s. After so many years of career, how do you still manage to relate to the challenges of the present and dialogue with the generations of today?
Lucia Pescador: This is a good question. Who knows? I don’t know. Can I really dialogue with the younger generation, keep up with the times? I hope so, it’s not for me to say. I certainly try. Maybe, I represent the memory of the new artists generations, of the young creatives. Probably there are things that young people don’t know, because they haven’t experienced them or because they are very distant in time. In times invaded by technology, where everything passes through technological devices, maybe someone like me who continues to do things manually is necessary, because it balances, tends to re-establish a balance. I certainly can only work this way.
Gianmarco Gronchi: As an artist, you have always been interested in the natural world and in the archetype, which is a key aspect both in your works and in Marras’ fashion creations.
Lucia Pescador: We have a very similar sensitivity. We are very different, but I understand Antonio’s visual side very well. Antonio is a man of great culture, who doesn’t just stop at fashion, but does everything from clothing to drawing and art. Here he proposes a combination of various aspects of his creativity, including performance, and I am happy to be a part of it. I also really love culture, in every aspect. That’s why I try to involve everything and everyone in my research.
Gianmarco Gronchi: And what advice would you give to a young artist or fashion designer?
Lucia Pescador: Very difficult indeed, considering that I know very little about how designers work. It seems like a crazy job to me, really challenging. There’s no time to think and it takes a lot of energy to work and create in the fashion world. That’s one thing I’ve understood very well! Otherwise, everyone has to do what they feel inside. This is the only advice I can give, which is to act according to how you feel and what you believe in. In any case, a lot of energy is needed. Young people must find this energy within themselves.