Undressed @ the V&A

I went to check out the Undressed exhibit at the V&A, and they had some great outfits. One in particular, a latex piece by House of Harlot (pictured in the back - image from Google as couldn't take photos at the exhibition) was again a good reminder that I should use a shiny fabric in my outcome.

Jean Paul Gaultier, lace-up pinstripe jacket tied at front.

Institutional White shoot for Interview Magazine by Steven Klein, March 2012.

I have always been a MASSIVE fan of Klein's highly stylized fetishistic look and when I came across this shoot I hit a goldmine. It has provided me with so many ideas for the photoshoot / performance / film of my garments, in a dingy dirty setting with my sheek crisp and clean final outcomes.

Full shoot here

Chloe Sevigny in Zana Bane Pentagram harness, photographed by Terry RIchardson.

Gag I made for experimental purposes, leather, metal and cable ties.

Christian Dior, AW 2000. (Use of plastic and bondage / gag with COLOUR, pale makeup)

Joel-Peter Witkin, Sanitarium, 1983.

Cindy Sherman, Bus Riders, 1979.

After attending the Boticelli exhibition at the V&A I was inspired by particulary the modern reinterpretations of his works, of Orlan and Cindy Sherman. Although I have previously researched Sherman, I bought Phaidon Focus's Cindy Sherman book. Her methods of changing identity like a chameleon and using her camera as the paintbrush were thought provoking with regards to my final outcome. Although the main part is the garments, the medium of film may also help to give them another dimension. 

Detailed brainstorm which I reconstituted from notebooks into my sketchbook

Photos and scans from RED LIGHT: Inside the Sex Industry, Sylvia Plachy and James Ridgeway.

I place this series of photos in my sketchbook to represent the character of the prostitute. I love the right hand image's slow exposure and will experiment with head movement in the project, most likely in the final outcome's photography. It gives the illusion of anonymity and dehumanises the subject in my opinion, just like the patients in the novel are dehumanised by the mechanisms and beliefs of those who run the asylum.

This book was a provocative tour of New York's underground sex scene told by those who live and work in it. It provided great visual reference for characters to explore in my project. I want to look at three characters of a nurse, a patient and a dominatrix - the reason being that the patient is the submissive and the dominatrix the dominant, with the nurse as a voyeur. 

A prison official preps a convict to undergo a lobotomy, 1961.

Vintage nurse uniforms, via Google (Silhouette interesting, furls around the bottom of hem.)

Time Magazine advert for ECT (Electro-convulsive therapy), 1948.

Guillaume Duchenne de Boulogne and assistant faradize the mimetic muscles of patient nicknamed, 'The Old Man', c.1854.

X-ray scan of human brain, Wellcome Images.

Patients undergoing hydrotherapy session, St. Elizabeth's, 1948.

Surgical Instruments used in performing lobotomies Glore Psychiatric Museum

Stoned prostitute #123276, Portland, Oregon, 1982. (Character idea, colours)

Set of Watts-Freeman lobotomy instruments; box inscribed by Walter Freeman, circa 1950.

Luis Ramón Marín - Portrait of a Nurse, Hospital de Sangre de Buitrago Madrid, 1936.

Man in restraint chair; by H. Clarke, 1869.

The restraint around the neck is inspiring me to create some restrictive accessories, maybe with padlocks, D-rings and other forms and shapes of buckles?

Nurse administers smallpox vaccination.

Shirley Jones, Burt Lancaster; production still from Richard Brooks' Elmer Gantry, 1960. (Inspiration for a high end prostitute)

Sketchbook work, experimenting with buckles, ties and D rings.

Vivenne Westwood & Malcolm McLaren, bondage suit, 1979.

Love the D ring detail down the side of the sleeve, will explore some work with D rings when they finally arrive in the post!

Vivenne Westwood, bondage trousers

Jean Paul Gautier, Bondage skirt

Betty Page covers Dominant Damsels magazine, 1950s.

From 1952 through 1957, Betty Page rose to fame as the "Queen of Bondage". She posed for photographer Irving Klaw for mail-order photographs with pin-up and BDSM themes, making her the first famous bondage model. Klaw also used Page in dozens of short, black-and-white 8mm and 16mm "specialty" films, which catered to specific requests from his clientele. These silent 'one-reel' featurettes showed women clad in lingerie and high heels, acting out fetishistic scenarios of abduction, domination, and slave-training; bondage, spanking, and elaborate leather costumes and restraints were included periodically. Page alternated between playing a stern dominatrix, and a helpless victim bound hand and foot.

Rick Castro, The Invisible Man Smokes, 1997.

Kylie Minogue in Jean Paul Gaultier, 2014.

Photos and scans from Asylum: Inside the closed world of state mental hospitals, Christopher Payne.

For the last half a century, vast mental hospitals were a prominent feature of the American landscape. From the mid-nineteenth century to the early twentieth, over 250 institutions for the insane were built throughout the United States; by 1948, they housed more than a half million patients. The belief was held that well-designed buildings and grounds, a peaceful environment, a regimen of fresh air, and places for work, exercise, and cultural activities would heal mental illness. But in the second half of the twentieth century, many of these beautiful, massive buildings, and the patients who lived in them, were left neglected and abandoned. Architect and photographer Christopher Payne spent six years documenting the decay of state mental hospitals like these, visiting seventy institutions in thirty states.

The images in this book provided great sources for me to respond to location and set design ideas. I attempted to experiment in this area through my collages. Towards the end of the book there were a number of photos of genuine straitjackets and restrictive garments which I presented on a washing line in my sketchbook. I will take the silhouettes from them into preliminary designs. I also noticed how there is a lot of striped fabrics used, something to explore.

American Horror Story: Asylum opening credits

This intro sequence has some great shots in it. I will try to recreate some in my final photoshoot and in my video, edit in some of the clips from the original - being careful of copyright of course...!

Female dominatrix, via Google.

Female doctors wearing surgical masks, 1920s/30s.

Vintage ball gags, via Pinterest.

Intrauterine Devices for Vice, 2009.

Experimental doctor's mask, ties round the back. Potential accessory.

Patient reaches through hole in cell door, via http://veryhangry.com/haunting-mental-asylum-photos-from-the-past/.

Robert Mapplethorpe, Brian Ridley and Lyle Heeter, 1979.

Berghain sex club, Berlin, 2014. (via. berlin.gaycities.com)

Nurses and caps, via emergiblog.com.

Vintage nurse halloween mask, 1960s/70s.

I really loved the way this item gave me inflatable sex dolls vibes.

A group photograph of the first twenty Navy Nurses, appointed in 1908.

Leon Levinstein, Street Scene: Woman in Blonde Wig and Tight Dress, 1960.

Patients being treated with steam, Waverly Hills asylum, 1910.

Asylum patient being treated for self harm, 1964.

Alexander McQueen, jacket from La Poupee SS 1997 (Elongated sleeve great idea, could be tied to become straitjacket at back)

Horst P. Horst, Electric Beauty, 1939.

Lab-Oratory at Berghain, Berlin, 2014. (via. berlin.gaycities.com)

Joel-Peter Witkin, Portrait of Isabelle, 1982.

An advertisement from the Journal of Psychiatry promoting transorbital lobotomy, 1949.

Straitjacket, via gettyimages.

Femdom and slave, no credit available. (Shiny material, dominating presence in photo something to think about in cinematography)

Restraints in a gurney, via. Pinterest (VERY BONDAGE)

Pina Bausch, Blaubart, 1977.

This image, commonly mistaken in popular culture as a photo from an asylum in Russia in the 1900s is actually from a performance by artist Pina Bausch. Bausch’s choreography often focuses on male-female interactions, and recently her work was featured as a reference in the TV series American Horror Story.

Still from teaser for American Horror Story: Coven, prod. Ryan Murphy & Brad Falchuk, 2013.

Portrait of doctor wearing surgical mask, via gettyimages.

Donna Gottschalk holds poster “I am your worst fear I am your best fantasy” at Christopher Street Gay Liberation Day parade, 1970s.

Nurses at Claybury Asylum, Essex, 1890s.

Issue straitjacket, circa 1949.

An X-ray image of needles driven into the flesh by a psychiatric patient.

Patient being treated with hydrotherapy, early 1900s.

Christer Strömholm, Boy in a Box at an orphanage / asylum, Cuenca, Spain, 1961.

A nurse acts as a patient during an electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) training session at Porirua Hospital, 1956.

Plan of Women's Division blocks at Broadmoor Criminal Asylum.

Prostitute in Times Square, NYC, 1960/70s.

Male anti-masturbation devices

Stella Stevens protesting at a women's rights rally, 1971.

A view of Bethlem Hospital, published in 1896.