Azuma Makoto's Iced Flowers at Dries Van Noten
Every once in a while, I see something so beautiful it stops me in my tracks. The iced flower sculptures by Japanese artist Azuma Makoto on the runway at Dries Van Noten's Spring 2017 collection during Paris Fashion Week did just that.
Mr. Makato describes his iced flowers as an opportunity to witness how flowers change in an inorganic environment unspoiled by human contact. Because the ice melts, the flowers change shape, expand, and contract, despite being in a constricted, even lifeless, space.
Of course, this again makes me wonder about the purpose of the fashion show. Is it art? Should it be a forum to display how women wear clothes in reality? Or should it help transport us from our reality into a dream? Is it a celebration of clothes the way they are? Or a statement on clothes the way they should be?
As the show progressed, the ice melted, wetting the catwalk. The puddles of water provided a surface that the ice sculptures reflected off, amplifying their presence. The poeticism of that didn't escape me. Even as beautiful things change form, even as they grow older or disappear, they continue to be beautiful, even more so. It all depends on our perspective.