Bless can’t be found in Chicago yet (although I could imagine a few of the accessories—cool jewelrey, “sock boots”—at Hejfina), but I go to the show because it’s so much fun. It’s artistic, quirky, and unlike anything you’d see during Fashion Week.
Bless dabbles in a bit of everything—beauty products, books, jewelry, fur wigs—often in collaboration with other artists. And their way of staging shows is full of the same surprise you would expect from an art collective based in Berlin and Paris. Last year, they staged a soccer match. This year, invitees entered a large warehouse (up in the 18th, surrounded by the Indian restaurants of Paris), to find the space full of disorganized, mismatched chairs.
We took our seats, and the show began with a man on a bicycle weaving slowly through the chair clusters.
Then the troop of models came out and began circulating, many of them manipulating gadgets with some odd décor—like a fur covered helicopter or a toy truck with a silver serving platter on top.
There were two cars in the space (real ones), one swathed in grey fabric, and the other in bright Nascar colors.
Afterwards, while the trend forecasters and street style bloggers shot the attendees (this is a great show to scope out avant-garde looks), I asked a friend of mine what she thought it all meant—the cars, the toys. Childhood? We weren’t sure. So we asked Selim, one of the French press people, if there was a theme. He said, “Oh no, Bless never works with a theme,” with one of those little French lip-purses. Then I went home and checked out their Web site. They have a new book out called… 10 years of Themelessness.
I’m headed to another show now (Yohji!) and so I leave you with this Bless video, for your interpretation, of course.
Photography: Elisabeth Fourmont