REVIEW: ONNA BUGEISHA EXHIBITION
Words by Daina Renton
Onna Bugeisha is the long awaited Exhibit featuring the surreal hair designs of Anna Wade captured by Jodie Mann, who was accompanied by a fantastic team who all came together to create what is arguably one of the most beautiful fashion art exhibits one can attend. I have deliberately not captured any images of the exhibition because I believe that it's absolutely worth attending and seeing for yourself.
Images are printed and displayed elegantly across each wall of the space with mannequins placed before the images to see hair pieces captured in the flesh. The wigs themselves to me just defy gravity. Their interesting textures are a fresh take on wig styling that I haven't seen yet before placed in a high fashion setting. These aren't just wigs. They are sculptural pieces that transcend all of your previous expectations of what hair styling can achieve.
The mannequins displayed not only the hair but the garments and accessories used in the shoot and I can safely say that the pieces are so much more spectacular in real life. There is detail and quality in each of these garments that evokes a deep appreciation for all aspects of design and of course Anna's vision. Danni McWilliams uses gorgeous materials and there is a mastery behind creating provocative yet functional in their own way.
The complimentary accessories to the looks designed and created by Michelle Watson truly pull the looks together, with coordinating colours and materials. There is a painstaking craftsmanship behind the pieces that adds an intricate yet essential accent to the 'armour' the models wear. Michelle has defied odds and circumstances to contribute the exact attention to detail that Feroce loves in fashion design. You can closely inspect each thread woven beautifully to create complex yet minimal additions to the clothes. The clothes themselves created with stunning materials and adorned with various different opulent appliques, this exhibit is definitely one for the fashion lovers.
From seeing this work in real life, I can safely say that Anna Wade has exceeded all possible expectations and provided a unique, awe inspiring collection. Photographs quite simply do not do her work justice. 2 years of her efforts have gone into an exhibition that when close attention is paid to the finer details of hair styling and design, does not disappoint.
Paulina, a warm and welcoming part of the exhibition has pulled off some of the finest editorial makeup I have seen. It is so very difficult to find the perfect balance between costume and editorial, but Paulina has truly understood Anna's vision and original inspiration which I found to be refreshing and satisfying.
A huge credit should be given to the models involved in this exhibit;
To Feroce they have perfectly embodied Onna Bugeisha and I always believe models should be commended for their ability to adapt a role and portray this in front of the camera. Never underestimate what models can do.
In essence I am glad to have attended although for a short while to have seen the work of all of these people in person and in all of its glory. There was notably a great turn out on the first night, and I recommend attending for the rest of the week if you get the chance. However, a strong draw back to this exhibition is that there is a distinct lack of credit visible in the space. If you want to know who the models and other team members are you will just have to ask. I would expect better from a multimedia exhibition of this calibre. Other than this element which I would deem really important, amazing work.
You can read more about this fantastic project in the upcoming HAIR ISSUE of Feroce, featuring interviews with the several team members behind this stunning multimedia collection.