When art meets fashion

Emilio Manari's "Marlene." Photo Credit: Hannah Smith

ROME- Barbara Tamburro’s 6˚Senso Art Gallery in the hub of the ever-vibrant Rione Trevi, encapsulates a fusion between art and fashion.

 "Art and AltaRomAltaModa: the event in the event," is inspired by haute couture, with all pieces drawing heavily on the female body. The exhibition, whose inauguration July 15 was timed to coincide with AltaRomAltaModa’s Fashion Week, explores this collaboration with a mix of forms, including paintings, photography and jewellery.

 Even before entering the gallery the viewer is intrigued, as the window of the gallery proudly exhibits what is arguably the exhibition’s finest piece: Eleonora Riccio’s striking “sculpture-dress.” This garment is created entirely from bra straps and underwire, with an astonishingly impressive result, and was the talk of the inauguration.

 Straps in varying shades of nude, beige, taupe as well as transparent plastic are sewn together horizontally one below the other to create the bodice. This is complimented by fully extended straps densely attached to the bodice, hung vertically in a "curtain", giving the garment an a-symmetric, long, skirt piece which would swing elegantly .

 The entire ensemble, which would not look out of place at one of the high-end clothes stores nearby, is accentuated by pieces of under-wire, protruding from the bodice at different angles, symbolic of a male influence. The juxtaposition of the smooth dress, and sharp wire, broaches the concept of male-influence in the fashion world and adds to the dress’s overall sense of daring. 700 bras were used, and the dress, which took just over a month to complete, was modelled during the fashion week.

 The intimate gallery space has a light, open feel and once inside the exhibition, the viewer is immediately confronted with a large canvas: Antonio Tamburro’s painting "Walking across the street." Tamburro’s pieces are impressive, large paintings. His use of perspective sucks the viewer into the piece, alongside the group of women it depicts. His use of colour is sombre, mostly grey, black, white, yet the bright splashes of colour, concentrated on the shopping bags held by the central figure, draw the viewer’s eye-line up towards the top of the piece, aiding this notion of movement, as though being swept along the street behind the anonymous lady.

 The exhibition, a wealth of quirky pieces, spans two floors and features work from some of the gallery’s fifteen resident artists. Emilio Manari has many patchwork pop-art inspired pieces on display. He uses a multitude of different patterned fabric to create several portraits, the most impressive of which appears on first inspection to be simply a mish-mash of colour and texture, yet when viewed in the reflection of the door behind, clearly reveals a female face. With such innovation and creativity, the gallery oozes originality, stretching both fashion and artistic boundaries, and fuelling the imagination.

 The current exhibition was running until the end of July, in tandem with Studio S-Arte Contemporanea, which houses an exhibition on the same theme.


6˚ Senso Gallery, Via dei Maroniti 13/15, 00186 Roma, 11am – 7pm Monday-Saturday


Eleonora Riccio’s striking “sculpture-dress.” Photo Credit: Hannah Smith