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Magazine > December 2009

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GD: Sorry for the silence. I just got back from the Miami fairs and needed a little time to go through my notes and digest what I saw. The most interesting surprise was my meeting with Arik Levy in the VIP lounge at Design Miami (which was basically a Ark Levy pavilion...he was, undoubtedly the star of the event). After Tomer mentioned his work, I checked out his website to familiarize myself with his work, which is mainly furniture and industrial design. But just after meeting, he began pulling out clothing from his line, Transition, which he produces in Korea. It looks like really well made, high-design activewear. Of course, once he explained the process behind the development of the line, it seems like it could be an interesting addition to our show. Apparently, a machine was created to essentially weld these high-performance fabrics together to reduce the need for stitching. The inspiration behind it has a lot to do with exposure to the elements, safety and clothing that truly responds to our needs in different circumstances. I explained the way we were hoping to show off the various machines and/or pieces of the process, and he said they still have the jacket and t-shirt in pieces and that we could show it laid out in those various pieces and then the different samples of the weld tests and other documentary materials. At this point, I am waiting for him to send me more information so that we can go over it and see if it is a perfect fit for Mechanical Couture, or if it would work better in a show more about the technology of fabric. It is interesting how often this seems to come up in the work that we are finding for Mechanical Couture.
Overall, Design Miami was probably the most inspired of the fairs this year. I got a nice introduction to Dror's work at the Moss booth, but he was not around to meet. I also really enjoyed a booth set up by Mitterand + Cramer, an art advisory and design firm. They had work by Studio Makkink & Bey that was really wonderful. For each of their objects or furniture designs, they devised a beautiful system of packing and crating that was as much a part of the work as the piece itself. It reminded me of Chalayan's wonderful Living Room collection, with the furniture morphing into suitcases and clothing, allowing the owner to move on and leave nothing behind. It was quite elegant and interesting.
I know we agree that it is so important to see all that we can, but this year was not the most inspired. Of course, perhaps it was the unseasonably terrible weather. I felt sorry for all of the art world pilgrims coming to Miami to enjoy the warm weather as a bonus, because it was just ugly...sticky and rainy and gray.

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