Kate Meakin

Kate Meakin

RMIT PhD Student

Research Summary:  My practice-based research examines the fashion image as a slippery structure which folds together the languages of art, advertising and everyday life. Drawing from methodologies of non-fiction film practice and readymade sculpture, my artistic work seeks to describe and reorganise existing fashion images and practices through a poetic engagement with visual ethnographic methods.

This presentation will address the making of the experimental film L’Officiel, 2021, a sound and moving image work that set out to explore the means by which lo-fi, experimental approaches to observational film can offer insights into the micro-dynamics of a self-organised fashion editorial ‘test shoot’. The images that were published out of the photoshoot I observed are in many ways generic examples of contemporary fashion editorial practice. By looking closely at the backstage dynamics of the production of fashion images, or the ‘doing’ of fashion photography, I enable a more complex reading of fashion images and the systems that produce them. This project explores the ambiguous tensions held in fashion photography practice: between disrupting certain industry stereotypes, while simultaneously being ruled by normative visual aesthetic codes of fashion.



Supervisors: Associate Professor Ricarda Bigolin, Associate Professor Mikala Dwyer and Associate Professor Brad Haylock