The Iconic Woman

Almost all current online and offline magazines wrote about, reported on or simply posted about the current exhibition in Ludwig Museum that debuted under the ”Women in Chanel” title. The co-designed artistic project of Peter Farago and Ingela Klemetz-Farago put our existing ideas on haute couture, beautiful topmodels and of course, on the iconic brand, Chanel, that is known to almost everyone irrelevant to their profession into a brand new context.

Haute couture is the high art of fashion. But what’s happening exactly when highbrow professionals as Peter and Ingela are capturing it? Artistic manifestation. Their photos are simply as breathtaking as the whole initiative that has been launched in 2010 with their series called ”Northern Women in Chanel”, followed by ”Women in Chanel” a few years later just to create an especially unique exhibition in the end. One that perfectly transforms and unifies the values of the West and East and their cultural attributes.

I really loved how the duo aimed for illustrating and creating life situations rather than flawlessly composed fashion photographs with which they further clased high quality design culture with local (in some cases) folk art and societal values. All Hungarian models of the pictures, Enikő Mihalik, Barbara Palvin, Vanessa Axente got the same instructions at the photoshoot: don’t be models, be actresses to create and re-create everyday scenarios we all can see at the end results. We could almost read every information on the exhibition open until 11 September, so I decided to only ask a few questions in a short interview with the beautiful Vanessa Axente, one of the key figures of the project.

What type of woman do you feel like in Chanel’s creations? What feelings, attitudes does it bring out  to wear them?

I feel like a sophisticated, strong-minded and goal-oriented woman when I am in Chanel outfits. I think these clothes were also created for such women.

You’ve worked on multiple projects directly with the Chanel fashion house, but this exhibition placed high fashion into a whole new context. In what way was the Women in Chanel artistic project’s photoshoot special for you?

I really loved the idea even when the pair explained the conception when we first met. It is only very seldomly that we can show even a small piece of our country and the whole world gets to see the pictures so I seized the opportunity right away. In my opinion it is a fantastic idea to present a country’s culture/heritage, and to do it in such unusual surroundings is even more interesting, but combining the two is the icing on cake that could be fascinating to even more people.

What do you think Chanel’s secret is?

Its history that dates far back and gives tremendous opportunities for inspiration. Coco Chanel’s story in itself is unique, and it did not stop there, the story keeps on rolling.

Is there any look on these photos that you would like to have?

I loved multiple pieces from the photoshoot on the plains, coats and jackets particularly.

Haute Couture or Prêt-à-Porter? Which one feels closer to you?

They are very different, but maybe I’d choose the Ready-to-Wear as it is more wearable and has more youngish pieces.

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