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ACADEMY OF ART SPRING UNIVERSITY 2011: Backstage @Mercedes Benz Fashion Week

 UNIVERSITYLincoln Center,

April Howard

New York City

Words/Backstage Images Judith Ecochard

The Academy Of Art University is an Art School with a very strong fashion department--- hailing from San Fran---This institution ventures east, staging a bi-annual runway show during the New York week (plus) of fashion eevents.

We only had time for it was also the huge Fashion Night Out evening...and there was just too much going on.

In general, student shows veer towards the more creative vs. the we have found these kind of runway events highlight the possibilities and technical skills of this select group of students. This show  really gave us an eyeful of how unusual materials can be manipulated for dramatic effect. very skillfully rendered and all who participated did great work.

We loved this dress by Camilla Olson...who was inspired by Blade Runner---aka women as rebels breaking in this dress...with an outer cage over a soft silk inner.

Rubber and leather details---we thought sexy tough chic.

There was also a group of traditional-style attire with colorful  prints--- sewn into layered/ruffled frocks by a group of textile students.

The little girls' dresses we thought adorable. And yes, this small one knew how to twirl around before we even had a sec to ask her to.

Former Michael Kors intern-Cara Chiappetta showed some very elegant classics...lovely the way the clothes draped the models..especially given her textile mix that included leather and rubber---all inspired by the remake of Nikita...Point of No Return starring Bridget Fonda.

Jungah Lee actually used hand painted/dyed latex and silk as textiles of choice and managed to make it look as light as any materials much more easily crafted. The faded colors of vintage books...a summery soft palette...that mimicked worn and torn pages.

We also had time to see Maria Korovitas' seriously embellished collection that took 600+ labor hours, by hand to get just right. Red Carpet worthy, IMHO.