What is the relationship between the body and fashion?
This is a question that comes up almost everyday in my reading and research as an undergraduate studying fashion theory. This idea - of the body being redefined and coded by fashion, and vice versa - is as old as the industry itself, and is multi-layered and complex. Inseparable from our constructions of gender and race, and guilty of collusion with capitalism, ableism, and all kinds of other domineering structures, this push and pull is hard to define, despite its ubiquitousness.
This month, our staff and readers search for answers to questions about fashion and the body, ranging from research into visual art, fashion design, modelling, social media, CGI, photography, and dance, in conversation with writers, illustrators, Instagrammers, casting agents, models, activists, and each other.
Fashion Market Editor Autumn Breeze deconstructs the iconic style and influence of artist Louise Bourgeois and actress/activist/businesswoman/fitness guru Jane Fonda, while contributors like Clio Reynolds will look at tattoos and fashion photography, Rika Mpogazi will comment on sexuality in the age of social media, and Corinne Chubb Worthington will go deep on the modelling industry, the influence of fashion on dance, and the manipulation of the female body in art and design. Couturesque newcomers will also bring a fresh perspective to our content - Beauty Editor Maya Kotomori will talk all things beauty, including the politics of "body positive" social media and fat acceptance, leading a group conversation with the staff on beauty and the body, while Fashion Assistant Isabella Papagiannis looks at how historical periods have shaped our modern notions of body ideals.
All of this plus interviews with names like Betsy Teske, the first curve model to walk for Alexander McQueen (twice, no less), model Maxim Magnus, who advocates for trans rights and visibility, and Madeleine Østlie, who co-founded AAMO Casting with Adwoa Aboah and is re-envisioning the modelling industry.
April also marks our 4th anniversary! I started Couturesque at the age of 15 from my bedroom, and it has done nothing short of change my life. We are so grateful for the continued support as we have grown and found our voice; we can't wait for many more years of working with and for our wonderful, talented readers, commenting on and shaping the future of the fashion industry. We have always believed in the intelligence of youth, and time and time again, you guys prove us right on that account. We never talk down to you and never will.
In celebration of this exciting milestone, April will also be a month of !!! GIVEAWAYS !!! Look out for weekly sweepstakes from some of our favourite brands, starting with the chance to win free products from Poppy Lissiman, later this week. It's just one way that we want to say THANK YOU for making the last four years so damn rad.
All of the love,
Editor in Chief & Founder
P.S. Inspired by the BODY Issue? There's still time to submit your writing and photography for publication alongside our regular contributors. Learn how to pitch to us.