How Fashion Is Seen as a Performative Art

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The Idea of Fashion as a Performance|
Yashika Makan |

This essay refers to certain articles and talks about fashion and how it can be a performance art, and how certain components relate to it to enhance and back up the idea that fashion is a performative art.|

Can fashion be considered as a performative art or not? In my essay I will be referring to two main sources that indicate that it can be a performative art, showing a connection between fashion and music, how fashion/ style to communicate a meaning, how artists and designers whose work reflects the idea of fashion as performance. As stated in the encyclopedia (1992, pg31):

Fashion is a term commonly used to describe a style of clothing worn by most of the people of a country. The kinds of arts, music, literature, and sports that many people prefer can likewise be called fashions. Thus, a fashion is-or reflects- a form of behaviour accepted by most people in a society.

Noel McLaughin (cited in Gindt 2011, pg 427) offers some intriguing insights on the relationship between fashion and music, with an emphasis on the performativity of gender. He states and emphasizes that, in the twenty-first century, fashion and pop (as opposed to rock) music are still perceived in highly gendered terms and continue to be derogatively downplayed as feminine interests that revolve around cheap entertainment, represent inauthentic expressions, and reproduce consumer capitalist values. Madonna stands as a prime example to illustrate how a pop star can play with and challenge conventional notions of gender and sexuality through her cunning use of clothes, haircuts, accessories, and visual imagery( Gindt 2011).Noel McLaughin states that it is not about the performance, but it is about the clothing that is in performance.( cited in Gindt 2011,pg 427). It is about how fashion and clothing is portrayed on stage, films, or music video’s when the actor/actress...
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