“After the nostalgia of a noble way of life and the fixation on imaginary femininity, fashion accrued the appearance of a way out, which it turned into the last and most literal embodiment of its occidental past. What it embodies is “individuality” – although no longer individuality in the sense of being, but rather a being-corrosive appearance: no longer under the banner of manly identity, but feminine deviation.” (Barbara Vinken, Mode nach der Mode. Kleid und Geist am Ende des 20. Jahrhunderts, 1993.)
Ingried Brugger’s fashion has incorporated the discussions of past decades into its design. As the director of an art museum, Brugger has close ties to the trends and theories of the art industry and is also bound by one of its central questions: Is there a difference between fashion and art? Till now, the answer most commonly used sounded something like this: Fashions replace one another, they arise in the present; art, on the other hand, works in ascending motion, it doesn’t allow itself to be forgotten, but rather demands consideration with others of its kind.
Ingried Brugger’s fashion relies on a reciprocal understanding. The garment is enhanced through an exemplary chain of solutions, which are made of reflection and a striving toward refinement. Since the fashion designer herself is simultaneously the measure and model of her creations, what constitutes a biography (i.e. what has been preserved in memory and what of that will be transferred into actuality) does have some influence. This fashion combines past and present: high and low, the socialization in the Austrian province with its predilection for national costume and the self-evident internationality of an urban existence – all these simultaneously highlight one another.
The main criterion is the femininity of these sketches. Fashion as commemorative art was already up for discussion in the eighties, embodied by an often homosexually defined community of the peacock-like and assiduously unique. Then along came perfect inconspicuousness, the formalized and formalistic wearability of a unisex, which the female identity only acknowledged at the cost of disembodiment.
Ingried Bruggers Designs promotes a new era in lavishness. The wearing of a garment once again becomes theatrical; the entrance becomes something spectacular. Clothing is enriched through the knowledge of just how erotic attention can be.