Willow Harman


Responding to:
W. Cade Gall, ‘Future Dictates of Fashion’, The Strand Magazine January, 1893.
‘Outdated? Irrelevant’

Digital (Adobe Fresco), 29.7 x 21cm, Instagram

When I first looked at the imagery provided for this brief I was instantly drawn to W. Cade Galls ‘Future Dictates Fashion’. These black and white illustrations of how fashion might look over the 1900s reminded me of modern day drag and high fashion as well as the red carpet culture. As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, I understand the importance and power that comes from the way we dress, the makeup we wear and the accessories we adorn ourselves with. I can’t claim to understand the thought process and meaning behind high fashion but I can still appreciate the empowerment it provides.

With that in mind I wanted to bring these illustrations to life and have them walk their own red carpet. While aspects of their designs can be interpreted as ‘outdated’ they are to be what I consider outfits that we could see worn by celebrities or models tomorrow. Fashion may always be changing but old trends always come back around. This piece is to challenge the viewer and their view of what it truly means to be ‘relevant’, as well as to celebrate the beauty and strength that comes when we all dress as kings and queens.