Rui Xu Blends Ancient Chinese Dress And Contemporary Couture For Fashion Exhibition

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Shimmering and billowing garments by Chinese style designer Rui Xu will be presented in an exhibition at London’s Royal School of Artwork.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

From Xuan to Blindness, which opens 21 August 2015, involves a collection of Xu’s patterns that are a cross amongst Chinese hanfu robes and the oversized couture pieces from the contemporary Parisian trend houses.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

Using the non-structural shapes of the classic apparel, she borrows tailoring specifics and western-design collars to update the appears.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

“My ambition is to revive the spirit of the ancient Chinese literati society in today’s fashion,” said Xu. “I want to bring the loftiness and luxury of Chinese noblemen and noblewomen and empower the spiritual freedom to the wearer of my garments.”

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

Her influences also include the philosophies of “naturalness” and “nonaction” located in Taoism – a religious tradition of Chinese origin that emphasises residing in harmony with the universe’s all-natural order.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

A lot of of the items are plated with metal, which is burnt to generate iridescent patterns across the cloth, whilst other folks are made from crinkled paper.


Related story: Met exhibition highlights fashion’s obsession with Chinese arts and design and style


Xu studied style at Beijing’s Central Academy of Fine Arts and is now undertaking a analysis programme at the RCA. The designer has also opened her own studio in London’s South Kensington, shut to the RCA’s campus.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

The exhibition is curated by Claire Pajaczkowska, senior analysis tutor in trend and textiles at the institution.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

In the first segment, garments on demonstrate incorporate a skirt with four trouser legs from the designer’s Xiang Wang Yi series that aims to contrast with stringent western tailoring.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

The 2nd element includes Xu’s composite artworks, in which she has captured the uncommon fabrics she chooses in a series of pictures that seem like fantasy landscapes.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

Xu’s collaboration with Hong Kong textile professional Kinor Jiang is proven in the third section. The duo utilised metal plating to cover delicate organic materials then utilised heat to burnish colourful patterns across the material – a equivalent technique employed by Iris van Herpen for her Autumn Winter 2015 collection.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

Xu is 1 of several emerging Chinese fashion designers and houses, this kind of as Laurence Xu, Shang-Xia, Zhang Huishan and Pei Guo.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

The exhibition will run until finally 30 August 2015 in the Upper Gulbenkian Gallery at the RCA’s Kensington Gore campus.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

Throughout the opening occasion, site visitors will be presented with a 10-minute-prolonged functionality directed by Madaleine Trigg from the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

10 artists sporting Xu’s paper dresses will portray the Chinese philosophy of Xuan – which is linked to Taoism and lends its title to the exhibition title.

From Xuan to Blindness by Rui Xu exhibition at Royal College of Art

An exhibition presently working at New York’s Met museum also examines the influence of Chinese culture on trend design.

London’s most profitable fashion exhibition for years – Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty – closed earlier this month, and Dezeen spoke exclusively to the late designer’s shut collaborator Shaun Leane about their work together.

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