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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 28 March 2015
DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 28 MARCH 2015 19 ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT Tea party, anyone? Young designer Penelope Efthimiadis has never shied away from innovation, drawing crowds at this year’s VAMFF Festival ANASTASIA TSIRTSAKIS Every year in March, lovers of quality and innovative fashion flock to Melbourne to partake in the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival (VAMFF); an event which gives designers of all calibres a platform to exhibit their work. As part of this year’s offsite runway series, label P.E - PENELOPE EFTHIMIADIS presented a fashion show like no other. With a fresh and exciting take on the concept of the classic runway, young Melbourne designer Penelope Efthimiadis took a chance and went with her gut instinct, leaving the audience wanting more. Upon entering the space, guests were greeted by genuinely smiling faces - a somewhat uncommon sight in the dog-eat-dog industry of fashion. A relaxed, yet chic setting, romantic fairy lights adorned the white-washed walls before a faux-grass stage, with full tea party set-up, inclusive of teacups, cupcakes, deckchairs and old-school games for entertainment. Reminiscent of a bygone era, the second floor of Bourke Street's L1 Studios was transformed into the ultimate garden party setting, which had all intrigued for what was in store. "That was really different for everyone, no-one was really expecting that," Efthimiadis told Neos Kosmos. "But I think everyone really enjoyed the different approach to a classic runway." With the assistance of visual Without too much information provided prior to the event, guests waited with bated breath while sipping on their complimentary champagne by Glen Maggie Wines, Kopparberg cider and filtered coffee of North Melbourne's Auction Rooms. Once the tunes started, the crowd parted and the models ventured through one at a time. Walking through the lined walls onto the garden party 'runway', photographers flashed their cameras every which way to catch the best angle of the model and her adornments, while the models casually interacted amongst themselves and posed for the onlookers. Models showcasing P.E - PENELOPE EFTHIMIADIS’ Collection III: La Nouvelle Vague. PHOTO: TIMOTHY TREASURE. The designer, inspired by the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, exhibited her third collection - La Nouvelle Vague (The New Wave) with a ‘70s colour palette of orange, pale pink, fuchsia, cream and black. Those familiar with Efthimiadis' work would know to expect well-structured, yet softly tailored garments that transcend the usual seasons of fashion, something that the designer effortlessly delivered once again. Slowly but surely, the crowd became enlightened as to what was unfolding before them: they were witnessing the official shoot of the collection - garden party style - bringing the consumer one step closer to the behind-the-scenes of the fashion industry. merchandiser Eleni Telianidis, the designer was able to bring her concept to life, the two having collaborated on the designer’s previous collection preview. A packed out venue, with a mix of industry officials, fashion lovers and supportive friends and family, the designer couldn't be happier with the turnout. "It was really great. A lot of new faces that I didn't know and a lot of great feedback from people who didn't know about the label." For more information about the label, visit www. penelopeefthimiadis.com/ or www.facebook.com/ penelopeefthimiadisPE ascension of modern Athens skill to manifest a bright and colourful aesthetic, to represent the neverending beauty of Athens and its people, which he believed "shone as brightly and as defiantly as ever" in 2011. Three years after the Artist Ben Fuog. Athens, and its tremendous history, has always and will always be a fertile ground of inspiration for artists". Fuog began his unique expression regarding the Athenian economic crisis in 2011, with his series entitled 'Μολών λαβε'. In the summer of 2011, the collective consciousness of Athens was actively realising the severity of the economic crisis and responded with strikes and protests. The series features multiple depictions of the 'Athina Kathari' garbage strike, which left hundreds of garbage bags strewn across the sidewalks of Athens and the series title, which translates as 'come and take', is Fuog's modern interpretation of the saying towards the government in terms of collecting the garbage. Upon his arrival in Athens, the city had been deluged with the physical manifestation of waste, which provoked a contemplation within him regarding "modern democracy, capitalism and consumerism" and further inspired his first series. Despite the mess created by the conflicting ideologies of the time, Fuog uses his creation of 'Μολών λαβε', Fuog returned to Greece to spend a further three months in Athens. After spending time in Athens, he realised that 2014 Athens offered up a strong sense of hope from the wired state of 2011. "2014 had offered up a sense of relief from the utter hopelessness and despair of 2011," he tells Neos Kosmos. In order to reflect the contemporary ascension of Athens from the dark depths of the crisis, he produced 'Athena Ascending'; a sharp contrastive series that reflects the humanitarian and caring nature of the Athenians, which allowed Fuog to extract a strong sense of hope to inspire the series. "Athenians were struggling with the oppressive constraints put upon them, yet the people were drawing people together to help one another and the bonds of family, friends and community seemed to be Over Kolonaki, part of the ‘Athena Ascending’ series. growing stronger," Fuog states. 'Athena Ascending' aesthetically depicts the "density and the pure size of Athens", where the house upon house nature of Athens is shown. In Fuog's belief, every building in the series "serves as a reminder that people live in them, and [the fact that] each one of those people has a right to a prosperous life." The light and colour portrays Fuog's experiences with the people of Athens and their indomitable spirit. The artist’s contrastive set of series offers audiences an exclusive, intimate and artistic insight into a Philhellene's perception of and persevering love for a country which constantly exalts the passion and humanitarianism of its people. At the consistent core of the two series are two important notions; the first being the ever consistent bright, caring and hopeful nature of the Athenians, and the second, the importance of art as a reflection of a location's internal reality. It is through these two series where the ancient philosophy of Aristotle is brought to life for contemporary reflection and enjoyment.
21 March 2015