The fall calendar at SVA is kicking off with “Click Chic: The Fine Art of Fashion Photography,” an exhibition documenting the vitality of fashion photography as a vehicle for creative expression, formal experimentation and social commentary. Curator Dan Halm (MFA 2001 Illustration as Visual Essay; BFA 1994 Illustration) has selected nearly 50 images by six SVA alumni who have created distinctive bodies of work in fashion: Roderick Angle, Guy Aroch, Maki Kawakita, Ryan Michael Kelly, Chiun-Kai Shih and Sarah Silver.
With cultural reference points as rich and varied as Art Nouveau, Buddhism, film noir, modern dance and Japanese Kabuki theater, they have made fashion photography their primary practice, applying a conceptual and formal rigor traditionally associated with fine art. “Because they’re originally conceived and created to appear in magazines and advertisements, fashion photographs are often considered disposable,” says Halm. “I’m hoping to change that by highlighting some exceptional images that hold their own as works of art.” “Click Chic” will be on view at the Visual Arts Museum, 209 East 23rd Street, September 6 – October 6; there will be an opening reception on Monday, September 10, 6 – 8pm.
Image: Maki Kawakita, photograph for Luire magazine, January 2003.