Stylish Art

See It: Mad Homes

A reason for fashion consumers to get arty before August 7.

By Laura Cassidy July 28, 2011

Clothes horses really ought to visit the Mad Homes exhibit on Capitol Hill.

You have about 10 days to catch MadArt’s Mad Homes exhibit, in which a group of soon-to-be-demolished homes on Capitol Hill become stage, platform, and canvas for area artists.

There are any number of ideas to glean from the installation, but those of us with a thing for clothes and sartorial identity might be especially struck by the middle home, in which artist Luke Haynes used clothing to line the walls, ceiling, and floor of two rooms and a hallway and staircase.

Because the presence of bulldozing and rebuilding—the scrap the old, erect the new mentality—is such a double-edged sword, you will probably already feel a sense of sadness for the charming old houses. And, maybe, contempt for the coming condos. There’s something really anthropomorphizing about the whole project. And when you stand in a room that’s been completely wall-to-walled with yellow gingham dresses, ‘80s sweatshirts, denim in every shape and size, and bright blue T-shirts, you can almost see the people that have come and gone in those rooms. You can almost feel them. Or at least I could. I thought about the memories they made there, and how they’d no longer be able to walk by. And I was that much more bummed out by "progress," and that much more aware of the life and spirit that our clothes can sometimes carry.

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