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Accepted Paper:

The new social costumes. Rapture, texture and modifications  
Ewa Rossal (Ethnographic Museum in Krakow)

Paper short abstract:

In this paper, I present the contemporary fashion projects using polish traditional folk costumes. I argue that this kind of project provoke to discuss traditional methods of describing material world and at the same time provoke reflection on the creation of new languages to describe them.

Paper long abstract:

In February 2018 Vogue was launched in Poland with the inaugural cover shoot, staged by Jürgen Teller outside Warsaw's Stalinist-era Palace of Culture and Science. In October that year we could buy the same magazine with smiling girls in traditional folk costumes. The reaction in both cases was a combination of contrast aesthetic feelings. Traditional polish folk costumes were always associated on different levels with its aesthetization, exotization and instrumentalization understood not only as an emphasis on the visual aspect, but above all as the presence of the reality ordering system behind it. Whereas in the times of the Polish People's Republic, both folk outfits and the clothing recommended by the government were renewed and figuratively reinvented. The politicized form of clothing was supposed to shape visually, but above all, to construct new thinking about ways to dress coherent with desirable social practices.

Therefore outfit could have been be a sign of opposition to the Party's recommendations. The folk costumes that were used by communist politicians in a specific way redrawing the existing cultural reality and artificially produced divisions into high and low art, for what is elitist and popular. Unexpectedly they became a game with conventions and common schemes, evaded the obvious by moving on the boundaries of existing orders and duplicated cultural clichés. In this paper I discuss clothing as an extremely versatile and accurate instrument of cultural expression, but at the same a complex link between the privacy of the body and its public meaning and emotions connected with it.

Panel Body03
Fashion fast forward: transforming body, fabric and media in a changing world [P+R]
  Session 1 Monday 15 April, 2019, -