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"I think it's the person inside that matters"
July 25, 2014 4:48 PM   Subscribe

Shatteringly Beautiful: The Glass Dresses of Diana Dias-Leão
Diana Dias-Leão combined her fashion design and glass making skills to create couture dresses made of glass, ceramics, wire and silken yarns to stunning effect. Beautiful, but how do you wear a breakable dress? Well, you don't. These were created as art pieces to explore serious issues around personal identity, beauty and human behaviour. The artist believes that anorexia, bulimia, self harm and body dysmorphic disorder are connected with issues relating to image and lack of confidence.

Dare to Wear: Glass Dresses by Diana Dias-Leão
'Dare to Wear: Glass Dresses by Diana Dias-Leão' is a stunning display of beautiful but deadly garments. Featuring 14 glass dresses and two barbed wire corsets, the display demonstrates Diana Dias-Leão's glass making skills and her experience of working in the fashion industry. You can watch the videos below which show the artist talking about her work.
Five questions for Diana Dias-Leão
posted by Lexica (16 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite

 
Wow, those are seriously beautiful.

Through this collection of inspirational dresses Diana wants to convey the message that: "Even though the image is glittering, it is the person inside who is priceless."

I found that a little bit baffling considering the person inside these dresses is a mannequin.

But then later I read this:

Two young girls once rushed towards my rose corset saying how great it would be for the disco, then recoiled when they got closer and saw it contained barbed wire and would cause serious pain if you were to put it on.

And it made more sense -- these dresses are about the fact that people really do suffer to be fashionable. These just make it so that the suffering would be quite literally caused by the fashion were you to wear them.

Some things are extraordinarily beautiful, but still not worth the pain.
posted by jacquilynne at 4:54 PM on July 25 [3 favorites]


They may be a pane but they make your glass look beautiful.
posted by hal9k at 5:01 PM on July 25 [1 favorite]


I thought these were attractive. But if the declared aim is "to explore serious issues around personal identity, beauty and human behaviour" such as "anorexia, bulimia, self harm and body dysmorphic disorder", then they utterly fail. Enough with the Artspeak. It devalues Art, and discourages widespread participation.
posted by oluckyman at 5:23 PM on July 25 [6 favorites]


These just make it so that the suffering would be quite literally caused by the fashion were you to wear them.

Cruel shoes.
posted by drjimmy11 at 5:43 PM on July 25 [6 favorites]


Can something be called a dress if it will never be worn?
posted by KeSetAffinityThread at 6:30 PM on July 25


jacquilynne — the "About the Artist" video in the second link includes some photos of models wearing the dresses, "just to prove they can be worn" in Dias-Leão's words.
posted by Lexica at 6:32 PM on July 25


Also, the "Making the Dresses" video in that link includes more close-up shots of the pieces, including the rose-and-barbed-wire corset.
posted by Lexica at 6:39 PM on July 25


"Tonight, your challenge on Project Runway-"
posted by IndigoJones at 7:42 PM on July 25 [2 favorites]


“The main message I wish to convey in my work is the fact that even though the image is glittering, it is the person inside who is precious,” says Diana. Well, that is very sweet.

What? Is that supposed to be the art critic speaking?


hal9k, your punning deserves shunning
posted by BlueHorse at 8:21 PM on July 25 [1 favorite]


Glass dresses are pretty good, but I like them better when they're made out of paper.
posted by nonasuch at 8:39 PM on July 25 [1 favorite]


"I think it's the person inside that matters".

Artspeak, i.e. "Not made for practical wear, this collection of couture sculpture is designed to create discussion and debate about issues around beauty and body image. The artist believes that anorexia, bulimia, self harm and body dysmorphic disorder are connected with issues relating to image and lack of confidence." doesn't grant you a pass. She coud have made a few larger dresses to illustrate her point - maybe one that would fit my ex or most of the women I know. She is "creating discussion" the same way Cosmo "creates discussion". I'm sorry, calling bullshit.
posted by vapidave at 9:31 PM on July 25 [4 favorites]


I think the barbed wire corset makes a point.
posted by Anitanola at 9:51 PM on July 25 [2 favorites]


made out of paper.

Those are quite beautiful, thank you for sharing.
posted by Hicksu at 10:36 PM on July 25


I came in here to say what vapidave said. If the artist was really hoping to illuminate body issues, she might not have made her works literally conform to the prevailing beauty ideal.

I mean, they're pretty; let's just not pretend it's about more than that. It gets to a point where tainting body discourse with this sort of Trojan horse of veiled reification does more harm than good.
posted by AV at 8:19 AM on July 26


If she's commenting on what the fashion industry does by depicting it as cruel, how would it make sense for her to do something the fashion industry specifically doesn't do -- represent a range of sizes -- as part of that cruelty?

I'm usually first in line to not get or not like art that everyone else seems to get on MetaFilter, so I'm kind of surprised to be on the other side of this conversation.
posted by jacquilynne at 8:25 AM on July 26 [5 favorites]


jacquilynne: Me too. That bit about the girls and the corset you quoted above is very telling.

And the size is part of the suffering too. People do suffer---hurt themselves even---to get into dresses of that size.
posted by seyirci at 9:12 AM on July 26 [2 favorites]


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