'India: Fashion Now' show on at Denmark's Arken museum

01 Sep '12
3 min read

“Now it’s all about India” – that’s how clearly the great German designer Karl Lagerfeld put it in 2012 when he launched his Metier d’Art collection for the fashion empire Chanel. And that’s what it’s all about at the Danish contemporary art museum ARKEN in the period 18th August – 13th January.

In the museum’s first fashion exhibition INDIA : FASHION NOW, ARKEN takes a close look at seven Indian fashion designers, all of whom have positioned themselves centrally on the international fashion scene.

Global breakthrough for the Indian fashion scene

“The Indian fashion creators are leaving their imprint everywhere in the international fashion world. You see Katy Perry and Oh Land in star designer Manish Arora’s playful creations, Lady Gaga in Little Shilpa’s sculptural designs and Naomi Campbell on the catwalk in Sabyasachi Mukherjee’s fantastic dresses.

It’s a veritable cornucopia of spectacular and breathlessly beautiful creations that the seven Indian designers are presenting in ARKEN’s exhibition,” says the museum’s director Christian Gether.

Every one of the seven designers has been hand-picked for the exhibition and is part of the pacesetting Indian fashion scene that has grown up since the end of the nineties. These are designers who challenge and experiment with the traditional Indian garment culture.

They transform Indian fashion through sophisticated stylistic experiments and develop the framework for what Indian fashion can be. With them they have some unique traditions of craftsmanship which they introduce into an international context and thus create a new, exciting idiom which elegantly or teasingly builds a bridge between the local and the global, between past and present.

Sculptural and experimental creations

The exhibition INDIA : FASHION NOW is showing colourful, humorous, imaginative, sculptural and experimental creations by the seven most outstanding Indian designers: Manish Arora, Morphe by Amit Aggarwal, Little Shilpa, Sabyasachi Mukherjee, Prashant Verma, Varun Sardana and 11.11 by Cell DSGN.

In collaboration with the Danish broadcasting corporation DR, ARKEN has made a portrait film about the Indian star designer Manish Arora, who until very recently was creative director at the fashion house Paco Rabanne. The film will be shown on the TV channel DR K and in the exhibition.

Doshi Levien reading room

Besides Indian haute couture visitors can experience an unusual reading room created by the internationally recognized designer duo Doshi Levien, which consists of the Indian / Scottish married couple Nipa Doshi and Jonathan Levien.

The reading room has been designed specifically for ARKEN and is built up around some of Doshi Levien’s most acclaimed furniture: the armchair Paper Planes, the bench Charpoy, the prizewinning sofa My Beautiful Backside, the chair Impossible Wood and the bench Principessa, inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s tale “The Princess and the Pea”.

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