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Claire Barrow exhibition | courtesy of HPR
Claire Barrow exhibition | courtesy of HPR
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Dancing With Dreams: Fashion and Performance Align at Claire Barrow's New Show

Picture of India Doyle
Updated: 27 February 2017
Fashion designer and artist Claire Barrow helps to launch the London Fashion Week festivities with a new and immersive exhibition at Galeria Melissa.

Drawing on Melissa’s sustainable ethos, Barrow has created sculptures made from found materials, clay and acrylic, which will be presented alongside digital projections and a live performance.

The film element of the exhibition is directed by Joseph Bird, featuring award-winning actress Sameena Jabeen Ahmed who starred in the 2014 film ‘Catch Me Daddy’, dancer Harry Alexander of the Michael Clark Company, LGBT and social activist Michael Peacock and performance artist Amy Kingsmill.

Claire Barrow exhibition | courtesy of HPR
Claire Barrow exhibition | courtesy of HPR

The multi-sensory exhibition will see Barrow creating costumes for the dancers too, adorning the 11 performers with pearls, feathers and ribbons in muted pastel shades. The aesthetic is in keeping with Barrow’s previous designs; she has built a captive audience around her playful and surreal illustrations, rendered on clothes, that often depict dystopian and eerie scenes in ink drawings or paint.

As each element of the exhibition works in tandem, the aim is to transport audiences into the heart of ideas surrounding social constructs and identity, exploring how society categorises and projects assumptions onto individuals. Throughout the exhibition, audiences will be free to interpret the performance as they like, drawing their own conclusions about the dancers and thus engaging with the exhibition as a whole.

Claire Barrow exhibition | courtesy of HPR
Claire Barrow exhibition | courtesy of HPR

The exhibition continues Claire Barrow’s exploration of fashion within a wider context. For several seasons she has declined to show collections at London Fashion Week, focusing instead on more creative and less commercial elements of fashion design.

By collaborating with Galleria Melissa, Barrow makes a welcome return to the London Fashion Week schedule and is a testament to the changing nature of the industry, one that is ready to see more experimentation with format and aesthetics.