Christina Walsh

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Artwear collection
CONCEPT 

It is certainly not the first time that we have seen art come out of museums.

Famous paintings from every era have invaded the catwalks of the most renowned brands and the streets of metropolises all over the world. This combination of art and fashion has created a considerable sensation, whether it is an entire so-called "art-inspired" collection, whether it is single pieces or, precisely, "unique pieces".

Throughout history, art and fashion have lived by mutual influence.

 

An equal game that has allowed both disciplines to enrich each other, giving life to creations that could not only count on unique designers in the world, social and market studies, up to superfine aesthetic balances, but also on incredible manual talents and creative psychologies.

Art currents and individual painters have been a source of inspiration for various stylists, who have revived famous paintings and cultural memories related to them with their collections. If we think about it thoroughly, in fact, we are not talking about opposite worlds, but rather we realize the intrinsic pre-existence of different common denominators. The first of these lies precisely in the concept of disciplines: both are born, exist and then subsequently “die out” according to the social model in which they are found.

The same radical change that women's clothing underwent when Coco Channel and Yves Saint Laurent designed the first women's trousers in the 50s and 60s as a symbol of women's emancipation, meeting a need for expression, change and evolution. They arise from the desire to express themselves and communicate the world around us, but at the same time, they want to help their consumers do the same. In 1965, Yves Saint Laurent was inspired by Piet Mondrian and his work "Composition with Large Red Plane, Yellow, Black, Gray, and Blue", while in the following year, he radically changed taste, colors and fabrics with a "pop -art".

 

Recently, Louis Vuitton has expanded the Masters collection, created in collaboration with the artist Jeff Koons: a tribute to Monet, Manet, Turner, Gauguin, Boucher.  He created a series of extremely elegant luxury bags that explicitly recalled these great masters. Following the same trend, Dr. Martens and Vans also created shoe lines as a tribute to personalities of the artistic scenario, arriving then at T-shirts and all possible declinations.

We can only close this series of examples, with Gianni Versace's iconic prints in a capsule of T-Shirts. On them, Andy Warhol's pop art exploded, with prints by Marilyn Monroe and James Dean from the 90s. Ultimately, even if in the original idea of ​​Art, no place is reserved for fashion, we can now say that stylists are real artistic talents and that in the world panorama, they are positioned precisely as such.

Following this general summary smattering, we can approach the discussion on the Christina Walsh collection with greater sense and awareness, despite being a visual artist per se, the combination seems obvious. We are faced with something far from obvious. 

 

We are talking about experimenting with vegan fabrics, water-based inks and a digital palette that becomes limited only by the imagination of her creator. The beauty of this clothing line lies precisely in its differentiation. In it, the message about the importance of dressing is evident, which does not stop at appearing, but rather focuses on the fact that in every single choice we make - from the most trivial things, just like putting on a T-shirt - we must be conscience. It is the desire to "carry around" a social message and at the same time be part of it. A striking example of this is the face of the statue of liberty on the tube dress: it expresses how much America wants to be beautiful and strong, but how much it continues to suffer from a general lack of action imposed on its own people.

The shapes of the various garments, sweaters, trousers and shawls are extremely simple. They do not hide behind anything, except in the folds that the lightness of the fabric creates in contact with the soft bodies of the wearer. The original works used for printing are "American Anthem revisited (It's up to you)", "Liberty Beautiful" and "1000 eyes of the peacock". All three enhance the strong contrast of warm colors and cold colors, which in themselves give off several sensations, emotions, and impressions at first glance.

 

On the surface of these fabrics, it seems that these two forms of art are chasing each other, in an endless play of colors and symbols.

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1000 Eyes of the Peacock
CRITICAL TEXT 

Christina Walsh defines herself as an Abstract artist with Cubist influences.

Her artistic production is mainly composed of studies that combine the two twentieth-century avant-gardes, combined with traits of realist tendency. They mostly focus on the study of colors and shapes. This premise is necessary to analyze her work entitled "1000 Eyes of the peacock", precisely to understand the detachment that the artist makes from her usual "political" works. In this case, the work conveys the subject exclusively from a symbolic point of view. The style is also different, as there is no structural analysis of the forms, but the artist is projected to an almost completely realistic representation of the subject.

 

 

The work, in acrylics on wood, depicts a peacock in all its beauty and majesty, surrounded by a floral setting. It is extremely relevant to Walsh's career and for this reason, it is re-proposed by the artist in her collection of "artwear" dresses in which she uses her creations as weaves of the same garments. It is also recreated by the artist on a utility box in Los Angeles, used as a canvas in the urban fabric.

From an iconographic point of view, the peacock has always been a positive, lively and colorful symbol, which embodies profound allegorical messages. In Muslim alchemist symbolism, for example, when the peacock makes the wheel, it expresses the greatness of the universe. The peacock is known as the "bird with a hundred eyes", which represent the stars, the universe, the sun, the moon, and the "vault of heaven". The Romans called it "Bird of Juno" and accompanied the souls of the empresses to the afterlife, since, already in the Persian tradition, it symbolized royalty, beauty and immortality.

In the Western spiritual dimension, the peacock alludes to totality since it brings together all the colors of the iris in the fan of its outstretched tail. This will to power is also expressed by the attitude, position and frame through which it is represented: he turns his neck to address us with a confident and proud look. In the history of art, the eyes that turn towards the observer have always been the best way to communicate and convey confidence and firmness.

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This bird recalls the substantial identity of all manifestations, but at the same time their fragility, since they appear and disappear as quickly as the peacock shows the wheel and closes it, and in the changing colors of its plumage.


It is a symbol of the positive transformation of any negative situation.

Christina Walsh embodies the beauty of this animal, realized in detail, also using gold, which gives royalty to the subject. The blue of its feathers is chromatically contrasted with the orange of the background and the flowers that adorn her art. It is also interesting to observe the diversity of style with which she decides to create the floral element in warm tones within the painting. In the upper part they appear realistic and detailed, with accompanying shades and shadows, while as you go down with your gaze, they abstract to become simple and soft lines.

For all these characteristics, we can affirm that Christina Walsh is not only attracted by the beauty of the animal itself, but by the meaning it has held for centuries both in history and in various religions. She decides to pay homage to the animal with a work that enhances it for its beauty, delicacy, and places it in an idyllic setting.

GALLERY

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CURATED BY

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