jeudi 10 juillet 2014

Bed dress

by Anthony Lycett
River near Pendle hill,  Lancashire,  you don't realise but it is actually really hard to stand in theses heels on theses slippery water stones! 

...Yes you read it right, a bed dress!

The father of my ex-flatmate Pauline asked me to make one of my costume based performance for the opening of his bed shop.
by Anthony Lycett
Bed dress in a river bed 

So I decided to make a dress around the theme of bed and sleep. 
To create my design, I have to dream it first, the shape appear in my dream first really muddled and blurry but becoming more defined with time. 

by Anthony Lycett

I don't really draw my creations, I visualise it , I imagine it, especially when I am cycling. When I feel the picture is clear enough in my mind I start making.  

by Anthony Lycett

To get inspirations, I decided to go in different bed Shop in London, to get suffused by the atmosphere something really shabby one.  "Are you looking for something in particular? We have a fantastic discount on all our mattress!" "No sorry, I am just looking to your store". 

So I decided to make my dress only from material you can find in a bed shop instead of fabric: foam for the mattresses (I like the fact that in costume design, foam is often used as stuffing and hidden and I like to use it as a decoration in itself) & transparent plastic to remind protection cover for mattresses. 

I  actually find more material for my dresses in DIY shop than in sewing & fabric shop.  The guy from Leyland or B&Q is always surprised to see a girl with lipstick & heels  walking among of the shelves of the shop with a determined pace knowing exactly what she wants. 

I created my favourite shape for dress: bustier top with big crinoline (large rigid skirt allow me to stick elements on the skirt like on the Lego dress). I liked to play with the transparency element of the dress wearing some kitsch vintage fluffy panties.  Between being dress and undress, as a modern Marie-Antoinette who's the maid forgot to put the top-layer skirt.  
spring hat & golden star eyes-ashes

For the material of the top, the result was driven by a Facebook status: a Facebook friend moving away was giving away a big bag full of rubber from every cloud of the rainbow.  I jumped on the chance and went the day after collecting the rubber with my big luggage.  The idea was to create the effect of the fabric reproducing the fold of actual sheets.  

The two rubber pillows on the side represent the pinafore aspect of the crinoline dress.  
For the head pieces I didn't know what to do and my flatmates came with that idea of the metallic spring.  

The most tricky part was the miniature bed.  I went to pound land and found the perfect size dolls bed but there was only 3 remaining so I asked them if I could order more, but they were out of stock so after a week of calling them everyday I had to resolve myself to make them myself with wood turning myself into model maker.  

One of the difficulties was to bring it from London to Paris and travel with it in the Eurostar. The custom guard was " are you getting married" I hope not. 
I tried to put it nicely in the luggage department but someone just came putting brutally his luggage on the top smashing the all dress, I tried to stop it but it was to late, fortunately, Just few bed were broken and I just had to glue them back...

The performance itself was quite challenging it was the first time for me to perform in a non theatrical  space and even a non artistic place.  Basically the audience had to contribute to the dress by making there own bed by adding foam mattresses, miniature toys & dolls and miniature colourful sheets on the miniature bed making a colourful patchwork according they own creativity.  

The audience was quite enthusiastic about the idea sometimes really rational "what do I have to do?  do I do it right?  "yo know in this case there is no right or wrong.  
They could take polaroid with the dress keep it on add it to the living installation, when I see the fascination on audience's face I know the performance is successful and that I manage to create and interaction with the people around! 

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