The National Ballet of Canada celebrated its 60th anniversary with a fashionable bang. They asked top Canadian fashion designers to design their take on iconic ballet costume item, the tutu.The relationship of fashion designers creating costumes for the ballet is a popular one. Coco Chanel designed garb for George Balanchine's ballet, Apollo in 1929. Garth Pugh recently designed edgy pieces for a new production of Carbon Life at the Royal Opera House. One of the most famous ballet/designer collaborations was Rodarte's work for the film, Black Swan.
The designers of the exhibit took this very seriously, and many elevated them to art with their inspirations:
Designer David Dixon designed his blush and red tutu in tribute to the people of Japan who have survived recent tragedies. The beauty of his piece represents a hope for a brighter tomorrow. The black and grey tutu from Label reflects the brand's commitment to sustainability. The strips of fabric are upcycled from previous collections from their studio. The brightly colored fabric from Hoax Couture (my first internship!) is an homage to Africa. The designers from Hoax Couture the fundraising event, Dare to Wear Love, which raises funds to help AIDS victims in Africa on behalf of the Stephen Lewis Foundation.
Other designers who participated in the exhibit include Klaxon Howl, Amanda Lew Kee,Linda Lundstrom, Comrags,Krane, Leather Atelier, Vawk, Sara Stevenson, Micalla,Rita Tesolin, Juma and Adrian Wu.
The exhibit takes place at the Design Exchange in Toronto until September 2, 2012.
All photos by Setareh Sarmadi except Juma tutu photographed on Tina Pereira by Ryan Chan.