Framed! (Fashion Space Gallery)


Cyrus Karibu.

I was excited to see the huge pair of wire mesh eyeglasses hanging from the ceiling in the reception area on my arrival to College today.

An exciting programme of events in the Fashion Space Gallery, entitled ‘Elements of Fashion’ commences tomorrow with Framed! Contemporary Eyewear in Fashion. Over the coming year, the series of exhibitions will explore objects and concepts on the periphery of the fashion arena, looking at, among other things, millinery, print in design and leatherwear.

This first exhibition, which as a wearer of glasses I am particularly excited about, explores the cultural significance of contemporary eyewear and is an exciting celebration of fashion’s ultimate luxury accessory. Our Gallery Curators Leanne Wierzba and Gemma Williams have created a unique exhibition which charts the historical development of eyewear design. The exhibition also looks at the role played by materials, tradition, innovation, advertising, personalities and individual style as well as fashion collaborations, catwalk and styling.

Gemma explained to me that the exhibition was born out of; among other things, a fascination with the smaller things in fashion, after seeing a catalogue of eyewear from the Oliver Goldsmiths Company whilst working with the V&A. ‘Here was a designer who was such a part of the ‘60s era that Vidal Sassoon created a haircut to compliment his design, yet had managed, like many eyewear designers, to remain outside of the mainstream and somewhat under the radar.’

This exhibition highlights our capacity to collaborate, and create artefacts reflecting beauty and a sense of humour. It also causes us to consider that even the smallest elements can play an integral role in the history and development of fashion.

Read an interview with Gemma and Leanne in DazedDigital.