Sunday, July 11, 2010
The Legend of Leigh Bowery
I recently finished watching a marvelous documentary called "The Legend of Leigh Bowery". For those of you outside the know, Leigh Bowery was an Australian fashion designer and artist who made a name for himself in the London art/fashion/nightlife scene of the 1980s.
I was absolutely taken by this man's ability to transform his own life into performance art by wearing the most outlandish costumes possible. His propensity for sequins, ruffles, bright colours and overall extravagant appearances is endlessly inspiring.
A big part of the film was Leigh Bowery's collaboration with the dancer Michael Clark, designing costumes for his choreography. I spent waaaay to much time staring at Michael Clark videos after this, because weird costumes and dancing set to music by The Fall is just a winning combination. These videos will change your life (if you are me).
Most of the documentary featured Leigh's friends discussing his life, and the most honest part was when somebody noted that "he was a fashion designer, but he really didn't want anyone else wearing his clothes". That doesn't sound particularly lucrative but his originality was certainly unparalleled.
RIP Leigh Bowery 1961-1994