McDaris Fine Art, in collaboration with 2440 Design Studio, presents an innovative exhibition by Lithuanian born, regionally based fashion designer Vilma Maré of Baltic Style. In “Queen of Serpents: Myth Interfaces Routine, A Fashion Exhibition,” Maré explores contemporary culture through the lens of Baltic mythology, with an installation that involves a symbolic ceremony of connection and cleansing. The exhibition opens Saturday, January 3, 2015, 6:00-9:00pm at McDaris Fine Art, 623 Warren Street at 7th Street, Hudson, New York, and continues during gallery hours, 11:00am to 5:00pm Thursday–Monday, through February 2015. Admission is free. A pop-up store will feature Maré’s clothing designs for sale.
Egle, ‘Queen of Serpents,’ is a feminine image from Baltic myth with hereditary connection to indigenous rites, worship of ancestral land and family values, and harmonious dialogue between humankind and nature. Maré’s exhibition depicts an ancient ritual in which Egle takes a central role as mediator between sacral and secular spheres.
Exploring this non-heroic Baltic myth, the artist promotes the preservation of indigenous identity and respect for its idiosyncrasies through a wearable design aesthetic. Maré’s Baltic Style dresses a woman in comforting ensembles of healthy natural fabrics. In addition to the usual body protection and adornment of apparel, Maré also maintains its spiritual content, as protection against harm and attractor of fertility and happiness.
Maré studied at Kaunas College in Lithuania and New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology. Through an application of traditional quilt making, she invented an original technique of tailoring featuring her signature vertical, rhythmic lines stitched into an intertwined composition like a net or map, which helps shape and fit the silhouette. Maré has shown in galleries around the world, including France, Lithuania and New York, and her clothes have been featured in New York City boutiques such as Patricia Fields, Antique Boutique, About Time, Bond 07, Henri Bendel and others.
This exhibition of artisanal clothing styles includes coats, skirts and other vestments. Additionally, Maré will exhibit 5 oversized, sartorial tapestries based on characters from the mythical story and 9 large original flags depicting a traditional celebration scene.
According to Corey Aldrich, founder of Electric City Couture (Capital Region runway shows by local fashion designers) and one of the sponsors of this exhibition, “Vilma Maré brings a heightened sense of connection and meaning to the clothing she designs. By combining a high degree of design and craftsmanship with a strong sense of spirituality, she transcends the boundaries of typical fashion and creates an empowered, wearable aesthetic.”
(Photo by Roy Volkmann)