An anniversary in fashion is nothing new, but for HUGO by Hugo Boss, a simple motif tee and a red balloon was never going to cut it. Instead the German brand has teamed up with the Saatchi Gallery to put on a month long exhibition.
Opened to the public yesterday, Clash was lucky enough to attend a preview on Tuesday, giving us the opportunity to share air with David Bailey, have an early ganders at work by the likes of Benga and Pussykrew, and discover Mr. Hudson’s penchant for AlunaGeorge; he played them twice in a set that outlived three hours.
Across two large rooms on the gallery’s second floor, 20 pieces by 20 creative types sit. Many were produced exclusively for the brand while a few already existed but were a perfect match for the brief.
The project, RED NEVER FOLLOWS, not only looks to 20 years of the HUGO label but 20 years of what HUGO stands for – creativity, innovation and not following convention and mainstream opinion. Each work centres around the colour palette that’s almost a byword for the brand (red, black and white), with scarlet shades occupying much of the space.
Artwork inside takes the form of both projections and short films, but the larger pieces provided the biggest impact. ‘The Pulse of London’ by Macro Barotti and Platstique Fantastique for example – a floor to ceiling red plastic ball that visitors enter through a rubber slit not quite a metre big - sits in the middle of one room. Next to it a wall plays host to ‘Emerging Colorspac’e by Sonice Development , resembling a large scale Spirograph.
Victor Ash exhibits one of the most traditional forms, with a huge painting of a red dog (‘The Red Dog’) and Mark Jenkins’ ‘Cornered’ is another intrigue, with a mannequin like model running head first into a corner of the room.
Clash’s top prize however goes to Felix Bonowski, for ‘Proximity/Repulsion’. In a piece that plays on ideas noted previously by Leandro Erlich’s ‘Dalston House’ and ‘The Weather Project’ by Olafur Eliasson, at the Saatchi visitors immerse themselves in the piece by standing in front of a projection, fighting off black and white graphic splodges.
An exhibition that goes beyond the brand, this is one anniversary worth following.
Until 1st September.
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