The other night a friend of mine was lamenting the lack of raw new talent in London, complaining loudly about the shows she had attended (Charles Anastase, PPQ, Paul Smith, Luella etc). She expressed her irritation at the continuous regurgitations of old ideas and added that she would be happy to never attend fashion week again. Her verbal exaggerations were hilarious and a provocative performance in itself. In fact, while she carried out her relentless assault on London fashion designers I was thinking about Mark Fast and what is undoubtedly a superb collection. A 27 year old Canadian knitwear designer, Mark knits everything by hand on a domestic knitting machine bought in Hackney five years ago. His pieces are exceptionally beautiful and miles away from current trends. You can smell the craft and dedication in his work, in each powerful and magical stitch. I am fascinated by the artistic vibrancy I have seen in his collection so far. His dresses are like complex body con sculptures, slightly reminiscent of the stretchy and clingy designs of Alaïa. The black crocheted mini dresses, the bright orange piece fringed on one arm only, the mini skirt with incorporated braces, these are real classics. Individual and modern constructions adorning the body like primitive African war paint or jewellery. So while my friend may feel cheated by what she has seen during London fashion week, I believe that Mark Fast provided a new clothing language. His presentation was remarkable and a real achievement.
Has anyone watched Gran Torino? I loved it and cried like a baby. Clint Eastwood’s performance as a hardcore racist is moving and absorbing (and his list of profanities so funny… ever heard of a “puss cake”?)
All pictures: WWD, Dazed Digital, Mark Fast