Shadow Puppets

Is the gape-inducing artist Kara Walker starting a fashion trend? We're still reeling from her terrific, terrifying exhibit at The Whitney, a show t
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Is the gape-inducing artist Kara Walker starting a fashion trend? We're still reeling from her terrific, terrifying exhibit at The Whitney, a show t
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Is the gape-inducing artist Kara Walker starting a fashion trend? We're still reeling from her terrific, terrifying exhibit at The Whitney, a show that employs her trademark silhouettes to build a mythical land, where race and class clash in crass, horrifying, and really beautiful ways. Walker's silhouette aesthetic is taken from the antebellum parlors of the South, where shadows and face shapes were drawn by candlelight and framed, and said to hold the key to people's personality, intelligence, and worth. And now Ann Demeulemeester has taken it from Kara, making little badges that mimic her shapes and style, but without the sharp racial subtext. It's not just using the silhouette, a technique that Alex & Chloe successfully mastered with accessories several years ago. It's the way Ann's characters inhabit a fantasy world, and the way her buttons "have illustrations of mystical creatures. Pin them everywhere, and take yourself off to a different land." Or you could just go here and explore Ms. Walker's own "mystical creatures." They're less comfortable than Ann's, but probably more exciting.

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