Art and Fashion

By Angelica Anderson

Last summer while I roamed the streets of Italy, I could not help but be inspired by all the sculptures, fountains and architecture.  Everywhere I looked, something captured my attention. I found myself wandering into open doors just to catch a glimpse of something new.

One of my all-time favorite sculptures was Bernini. His artwork showed movement and grace. The details he portrayed were fascinating. I couldn’t help but see design and draping in his work.

Prior to my schooling at SMU, I was fortunate enough to attend design classes and one of my instructors would say, “In order to know where we are going in fashion, you have to know where we have been.” Before we were even allowed to even collaborate on ideas at the beginning of the semester, our professor gave us a history on how art and environment play a role in forecasting fashion.

The Rape of Proserpina by Gian Lorenzo Bernini (Napoli, 1598 - Roma, 1680). Photo credit:

The Rape of Proserpina by Gian Lorenzo Bernini (Napoli, 1598 – Roma, 1680).
Photo credit:

For decades, art has been a driving force in creating trends. Many designers look to art forms, architecture, and their surroundings for influence. Cristobal Balenciaga claims his draping technique was inspired by the work of Spanish painter Francisco de Zurban, while Coco Chanel said, “Fashion is Architecture. It is a matter of proportions.”

Photo credit: archives

Photo credit: archives

Photo credit:

Photo credit:

When designers begin to formulate ideas for the next season they gain influence from what they see by creating story and color boards piecing together what they see in their minds. Not all of us may be destined to be designers, but we should still continue to grow our palate by exploring the art world and our surroundings.

While not all of us may be able to take a trip to Italy this summer, the Kimball Art Museum brought a piece of Italy to the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex. Bernini’s sculptures of clay will be on display until till May 4, 2013. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to explore his work and gain inspiration for whatever creative project you are working on right now.

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