With acute attention paid to precision and beauty, Phoebe English conveys the numerous meticulous methods and laboured constructions that form the centre of her design ethos.
The beaded form appears effortlessly suspended from the gallery’s ceiling, the spiked glass surface becoming increasingly dense and chaotic as it reaches the ground. The piece was constructed from over 70 kg of silver glass beads, each one intricately hand stitched together to form one glistening surface, which stretches to the top of space. This central installation produces a breath-taking image of contrasting textures, forms and juxtaposing surfaces by creating a visual weightiness through the use of rough materials to craft a seemingly soft, undulating and sprawling surface.
Providing context alongside the installation, there is an introspective of Phoebe English’s processes, including an archive of unseen photographs, sketchbooks, textile swatches, tools and research images used each season in the development of new and original work.
Jemima Burrill, curator at NOW Gallery says: “NOW Gallery takes fashion seriously and sees the NOW Fashion commission as an important part in the exploration of great UK design brought to life in this exciting gallery space. The precision of English’s working process matched with the clear conceptualisation of her design made her the perfect candidate for NOW Gallery’s first fashion commission. We are thrilled to see English’s exploration of the gallery space with such a definitive beaded work celebrating the space, fashion process and challenging our concept of what fashion is.”