Friday 6th September

| BY Dino Bonacic

Designer & Artist Patrick Church Kicks Off NYFW With an Interactive Fashion Exhibition

Off the schedule, but on the radar. Artist and designer Patrick Church is a New York figure who continuously skips on the traditional ways of presenting his collections in place of creatively figuring out his own path to success. And it seems to be working – his colourful illustrations have become synonymous with fellow queer creatives who love to wear the pieces. Graphic faces are hand-painted and printed on bold, sexy silhouettes, including a range of underwear which, as soon as it hits Church’s own e-tail platform, tend to sell out. On Wednesday evening, Church hosted the opening of A Hell of My Own Making. Part interactive exhibition, part presentation of his new SS20 collection, the show on display at the Wallplay gallery in Manhattan is a platform allowing the designer to showcase all aspects of his evolving brand.

In addition to his artwork covering every inch of the room with painted walls and paintings hanging wherever you look, the exhibition also includes an interactive aspect. Honouring the democratic approach to the often exclusive experience of fashion week, Patrick Church invited guests to become part of the presentation by putting on the looks and taking photos in front of a set designed by Leeza Regensburger, referencing cheesy noughties prom photographs. Can fashion ever truly be democratic? “Yes, and that is something we want to show by opening up our presentation for the public to participate,” the designer tells us. 

Themed around angels and demons, both the collection and its environment explore traditional iconography as it merges with Church’s design signatures – leather jackets, jersey pieces and shirting all make their appearance. If he had to choose a film to describe the collection, which one would it be? “Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet.” Exuberant and visually indulgent, the clothes represent the dedicated queer fandom the Brit accumulated in the past few years. “The fashion aspect of my work is inspired by my art, for now they are interlinked.” he tells us. In case you want to find out exactly how those two wonderfully colourful worlds collide, you better get going. The exhibition will run until the end of September, with the interactive fashion part open for the public to enjoy by the end of the day.

Photographs by Jesse Herndon. ‘A Hell of My Own Making’ by Patrick Church is on display at Wallplay in NYC, 117 Beekman Street.

@patrickchurchny