THROUGH THE LENS: BARBARA I GONGINI x OLYMPUS

Editor: Marlo Saalmink

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Dance. A profound medium of expression. Powerful, enabling, and when conducted right, extremely moving. In its modernity, it serves us with a foundation of interaction. It can enable us to see fashion in another way. Clothes need to be worn, this is when, closest to our skin, we can truly evaluate their relevance.

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When we bring Faroese designer Barbara I Gongini into the equation, our attention should be drawn. Barbara is indeed not a stranger to these pages, with her always sincere and emotive take on contemporary wardrobes. Garments are an entity to her, one that shall be carried over seasonal boundaries. Her multi-functional pieces have acquired a cult-following. A group of individuals that seek for meaning in what they wear, embracing Barbara’s take on corporate responsibility and respect for the environment. Her connection with the art world, made for an interesting premises, whilst using dance as a medium.

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This summer season, we all gathered in Østerbro, one of Copenhagen’s more leafy neighborhoods, in a cold warehouse, its white floors, leaving us with a sterile and cold feeling. In the back, one could sense a faint humming, an eclectic array of musical tones serving to break the silence. On the pristine floor, garments were spread out, life-less and immobile. Cue, young dancer, Marcin Kupinsky of the Royal Danish Ballet, as he calmly sways into the room. He observes, initially ignoring the garments, taking small steps along the rooms contours. Enigmatic, poised and filled with reflection.

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Suddenly, he feels triggered by the building tones, provided by ‘’The Magnetic Eagle’’, a cunning duo, that improvise heavily in their work, guiding their tones into the white space, bouncing of its barren walls. Their ‘‘cry’’ or wallowing proverbial presence, provided a mesmerizing subtext to Barbara’s garments. Marcin danced. He interacted, grabbing the knitted overlock vest, working its texture, calmly and with astute precision. As if he was telling us to hold on to our sense of curiosity. Slowly he dressed, stretching the fabrics, morphing their shapes, colliding on the floor, breathing intensely, fulfilled yet leaving the audience with a sense of wonder. The SS16 collection garments feature here as vivid passers-by in Marcin’s own universe. A connection that made sense, sprung from the tactile pieces Barbara loves to create, carefully nurtured here by Marcin’s tender touch.

For more on Barbara: www.barbaraigongini.dk

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