About the Artist

My work is a combination of art, history, fashion and psychology, and my designs seek to illustrate the complexity of the human condition through the medium of costuming. I am particularly interested in period costuming and fashion history. Through color, shape, fabric and design, a garment can impart knowledge just like the pages of a book. We can learn intimate details about a woman who wore a particular dress, such as her age, social status, wealth and occupation. We might even learn her political views, her marital status, and her views on sexuality. As in a novel’s description, a character emerges from the tiniest of details – the height of a hem, the color of a ribbon, or the flounce of lace at the sleeve. Much like a detective, a historical costumer pieces together the world and personality of the wearer, to better understand the relationship between fashion, history, society and art.

Not only do I want to create great costume designs, but I also want to reach out to others, through the visual medium of costuming, to educate them and encourage them to explore the fascinating field of fashion and textile history, and to learn about the “person in the dress.” By making this human connection, we can better understand people who lived before us, and apply that experience to our modern concepts of art and fashion.

 

 

Kelly Mann Costume Designer