Monday, February 15, 2010

KNOW || FASHION: Cathy Horyn foretells the future of fashion

I just finished reading a great interview that Dirk Standen of did with NY Times fashion critic, Cathy Horyn.  I don't believe the necessity of the critic has changed; it has seemingly faded to the background in current times for many reasons. The standout one goes to  the so-called democratization of the fashion world where pre-teen editorial is sought after.  I believe in critics because I believe that experience and education (whether ivory tower or real-world) count. There's so much clutter out there --- a cultivated point of view matters. There's room for everyone, but I feel like I'm learning something when I engage with Ms. Horyn's perspective.
Cathy Horyn
Read the interview here.

Excerpts of my favorite parts from

Everything is so instant now. Do you ever wish as a critic that you had more time to think over your reaction to a show?
I’ve definitely felt when I go back to the blog the next day I can add more, change my opinion slightly. I don’t really have the need to say, “Boy, did I blow my judgment. Boy, was I wrong.” There was only one show that I felt I really, really got wrong, and I wrote about that…It was Stefano Pilati’s first YSL show. Blogging definitely allows you to elaborate, to return to the show, to think about it some more. I did it with a couple of Jil Sander women’s shows, where the show was in the evening and I didn’t have a lot of time [to write the review], and the next day I went to the showroom and touched all the things, and then in the blog I was able to say more. I love that combination. You don’t change your opinion but you expand on it, add more ammunition or more support for the argument that it was a great show or a bad show.

[Barneys fashion director] Julie Gilhart told me that Alaïa sold all through the recession; he’s selling now. He wasn’t affected by the ups and downs.
He’s [always] sold. When I went to see him in ‘99, he was having difficulty. But Barneys still would buy and Browns and a few other stores. And he still delivered, delivered late but delivered. He didn’t have a big name, the shoe business was a little dormant at that point, but Alaïa kept designing clothes. He kept designing things that nobody else was making. And that’s why Norma Kamali deserves support. She keeps designing things that are interesting. Sure, she does the bathing suits and the parkas, but she does other things, too. She keeps moving. And Azzedine is still working every night until three in the morning making something interesting. And I think the basis for it is a technique. It’s not a pretty dress. It’s a technique that interests Azzedine. He can figure out how to industrialize ruching or industrialize something else, so people who say technique is irrelevant are wrong. It isn’t. It motivates most of the serious designers. It motivates craftsmen. It was what motivated the most recent Jil Sander collection. It was what motivated Martin Margiela when he was first coming along. It’s funny, I saw Karl Lagerfeld during Couture and we were talking about these jackets and dresses he did that he said were seamless. They weren’t seamless, but they kind of look it. It’s really interesting how he did it. I said, how long have you been working on that? He said, well, we’ve been trying to do it for a while but I wasn’t happy with the results. He said, you know I don’t take vacations, I work all the time. That’s Karl’s spiel but it’s true. He and Azzedine, they don’t like each other, but they’re identical when it comes to the fact that they work all the time. And the proof is in the clothes. They come up with things that nobody else can.

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Blogger kellina said...

I really enjoyed this interview too, Cathy Horyn always has a refreshing perspective.

February 16, 2010 at 9:20 PM  

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