Irina A. BALAKSHINA
National Research University Higher School of Economics
12, Malaia Pionerskaia ul., Moscow, Russian Federation, 115054
PhD Candidate in Art and Design
ORCID: 0000-0003-4713-3954Touching Fashion: Tactility of an Exhibit as a Form of Interaction with the ViewerAbstract:
The article analyzes how tactility affects the viewer's perception of fashion exhibits in the museum space. Tactility is seen as one of the special qualities of perception – the perception of the tactile, spatial, kinesthetic properties of an object, including in its absence. As an example, the text considers the exhibitions «Margiela. The Hermès Years» and «Rei Kawakubo / Comme des Garçons: Art of In-between», which the author visited online, and «Delicate Designs. Fashion 1988-2018» and «Fabrics of Moscow», which the author attended in St. Petersburg and Moscow. The main question of this article: how to compensate for the absence of the ability to touch the objects of the exhibition at museums in general and fashion exhibitions in particular. The article names ways to create a tactile experience without the presence of tactile sensations. The thesis that the sense of touch can be without direct physical contact is put forward, and possible ways of creating such a tactile experience on the example of fashion exhibitions are shown. Such features as immersivity, inclusivity and virtuality characterize contemporary exhibitions. In such a space the viewer acts as a participant of the action. We see costume as an ideal type of exhibit because of its direct connection with the viewer. As a result of such collaborations special forms are born. The article emphasizes the importance of scenography and the adaptation of space for exhibitions. We refer to the performativity of fashion exhibitions, where costumes translate certain ideas. On the examples of Hermès, Maison Margiela, Comme des Garçons, Balenciaga it is described how brands demonstrate tactility, what it is and what techniques were used in the exhibitions of these brands. Next it is shown what methods curators invoke in order to provide viewers with a sense of touch whilst it is inaccessible and how they achieve a tactile response. Further the international requirements for storing clothing items and the specifics of exhibiting and caring of fabric are described. The article concludes with an exhibitions’ analysis and the role of VR and AR in a fashion exhibition: the focus is on extending the body into virtual space and digital clothing.Key words:
fashion, fashion exhibitions, museum, tactility, hap-tics, performativity, corporeality, curatorial practices.References:
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Balakshina, I. Touching Fashion: Tactility of an Exhibit as a Form of Interaction with the Viewer. International Journal of Cultural Research, 3 (44). 53–65. DOI: 10.52173/2079-1100_2021_3_53