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A fashion exhibition as cinematic experience

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Both the museum and cinema encourage the viewer to escape from the experience of the everyday and sequentially mobilize the gaze on a temporal itinerary that triggers personal affective responses. In this article, I will analyse the scenography of the exhibition Catwalk, a thematic display of historic dress at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam (20 February–22 May 2016). Designed by photographer Erwin Olaf, the exhibit made explicit connections to the catwalk even though many of the garments on display predate the origins of the catwalk or runway as a mode of presentation for fashion. The scenography negated the sensation of time and historicity and produced the affect of glamour, such that the Catwalk exhibition might be linked to Sophia Coppola’s film Marie Antoinette (Coppola, 2006) in borrowing from the third-wave feminist aesthetic.
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Keywords: Marie Antoinette; Third Wave Feminism; affect; catwalk; fashion exhibition; glamour

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Ryerson University

Publication date: April 1, 2018

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  • Film, Fashion & Consumption is a peer-reviewed journal designed to provide an arena for the discussion of research, methods and practice within and between the fields of film, fashion, design, history, art history and heritage. The journal seeks to stimulate ongoing research on these topics and to attract contributions not only from scholars researching in these areas but also from practitioners, who are traditionally excluded from academic debate. The journal thus aims to unite and enlarge a community of researchers and practitioners in film, fashion, consumption and related fields, whilst also introducing a wider audience to new work, particularly to interdisciplinary research which looks at the intersections between film, fashion and consumption.
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