October 14, 2010 – January 01, 2011
Haute Couture, by definition, is made-to-order, high-quality and hand-executed, and for centuries has signified the ultimate in luxury and exclusivity. Conversely, machines typify the antithesis of couture, implying mass-production and decreased standards. Currently, however, we are witnessing a fascinating phenomenon of mechanical luxury – designers are reinterpreting couture as a hybrid of both mechanized process and customized craftsmanship.
Designers who employ machines and technology neither for their streamlining abilities nor for their capacity to take advantage of mass production. Instead these designers look to machines to realize completely new forms and products. As opposed to simply incorporating technological components into wearable pieces, these designers either create new machines in order to realize their vision, they are inspired by machines as concepts, they turn to the machine as collaborator or surrogate in the design process, or the machine becomes part of the actual work.