HOT FRUITS installation at EXILO STUDIO

Collage by Justin Allen. Photo by Roger Davies

Poster installation by Justin Allen. Photo by Roger Davies.

Poster installation by Justin Allen, leather bags by Chosé General. Photo by Roger Davies.

Leather bags by Chosé General. Photo by Roger Davies.

Hand-painted silks by Katrin Jurati, Karandash armchair by Fernando Rodrigues, leather bags by Chosé General. Photo by Roger Davies.

Leather bags by Chosé General

Hand-painted silks by Katrin Jurati

Stationary by Chosé General, hand-made books by Justin Allen, displayed pop-up book by Justin Allen, hand-painted silks by Katrin Jurati, Karandash armchair by Fernando Rodrigues. Photo by Roger Davies.

Hand-painted silk necklaces by Katrin Jurati. Photo by Roger Davies.

Ceramics by Pilar Wiley. Photo by Roger Davies.

Hand-painted silks by Katrin Jurati, wooden shelf and Mountain by Louis Gabriel, reclaimed poster artwork by Nicolau Vergueiro and Marco Antonio Prado. Photo by Roger Davies.

Friends of ESS Presents: KATIE MCKAY – Patterning narratives

Egypt pattern

EXILO STUDIO  showcased new pieces from Brooklyn-based fashion designer Katie McKay earlier this year.

Katie created tanks, tees and hats with fabrics printed in her original patterns.  Highlights include

an Egypt-themed pattern, printed on jersey, and a snake with prey pattern, on silk.  A feast for the eyes.

Katieʼs work ranges from fashion and textile design to art direction and fine art.  Her subject matter is

often inspired by disparate facets of popular culture.

The Scarface pattern, which breaks down some of the movie’s scenes and themes into a multi-perspective composition:

Scarface

Scarface detail

Katie’s sense of 2-d narrative representation is pure wonderment, conjuring up the compositions of Islamic illuminations from the 1500ʼs or even the surrealist in-your-face world of Robert Williams.

Bath-house scene by Behzād

Robert Williams


Katie has dressed both front women from Jessica 6 and Midnight Magic – Nomi Ruiz and Tiffany Roth – as well as other performers.

Nomi Ruiz models Katie McKay's creation. Photo by Bek Andersen.

Nomi Ruiz models Katie McKay's creation. Photo by Bek Andersen.

Nomi Ruiz models Katie McKay's creation. Photo by Bek Andersen

Nomi Ruiz models Katie McKay's creation. Photo by Bek Andersen

Tiffany Roth performing with Midnight Magic wearing accessory by Katie McKay.

Katie’s fashion design brings to mind the mind-blowing work of Chinese-American, San Francisco-based, fashion designer Kaisik Wong, who dressed  flashy acts from the 70′s such as the incomparable funk diva Betty Davis and The Cockettes.

Cover of Betty Davis' album They Say I'm Different with fashion by Kaisik Wong

Fashion by Kaisik Wong

Fashion by Kaisik Wong

Vest by Kaisik Wong

Spring 2002 Balenciaga show, where Nicolas Ghesquiere found inspiration in Wong's designs

As with Wong, Katie’s aesthetic procures the occult, almost in general terms, as a vehicle to imagine and produce a world full of ceremonial attitude.

Commonly Katie’s subjects represent occult imaginaries of supernatural proportions themselves, as she has interpreted Sun Ra’s idiosyncratic universe through graphic renderings, patterns and most recently a painted mural in Brooklyn, NY:

8' x 8' painting part of a community mural on the corner of Eastern Parkway and Franklin Ave. in Brookly, NY.

Katie manages to find and rearrange the ornamentation imbued in our cultural narratives – from Egyptian mythology to S&M culture to Scarface.

Though touching on fundamentals of recent fashion – loud colors, heavy patterning, neo-tribalism, neo-psychedelia (found in some fashion of the whites gone wild and hip-hop youth cultures), Katie’s composition are so unique, perceptive and timeless, they surpass all expectations. Think Sun Ra!

Katie has also developed the logo of Jessica 6, and art direction for both Jessica 6 and Midnight Magic’s cover art (seen here featuring original artwork by Pilar Wiley).

Jessica 6 logo

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