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Fashionably Naïve




"Fashion is only the attempt to realize art in living forms and social intercourse" Francis Bacon


The exhibition, “Fashionably Naïve”, is the product of an extraordinary collaboration between GINA Gallery of International Naïve Art and several fashion designers, led by Yaron Minkowski, who has returned to work in full force after a two-year hiatus.  About a year ago, when Minkowski returned to work, he approached Maayan Israeli – the gallery’s Artistic Director – with the idea of holding a joint exhibition that would explore the mutual influences and interactions between naïve art and the world of fashion. Israeli embraced the idea, and they began reaching out to potential collaborators in their respective fields: Yaron approached designers he thought may be interested in the collaborative project, while GINA Gallery issued a call for naïve artists worldwide to convey in painting what fashion is and its role in their lives.

Fashion is present in naïve paintings, whether they portray rural or urban life, in South America or in Western Europe, and it can – sometimes unintentionally – give us clues to the type of activity the figures are engaged in or where they come from, much like an anthropological record. The artworks that were submitted to the gallery following the call for artists came from Israel and many other countries, and clearly demonstrate this observation. Naturally, the paintings also reflect each artist’s personal interpretation of the concept of fashion and its role in his/her life, and such distinct individual interpretations can be found even among artists from the same country. 

Similarly, a range of different interpretations can be observed in the many ways that naïve art inspired and influenced the designers participating in the exhibition: from Yaron Minkowski’s meticulous and hand-crafted textile work, consisting of clothing sets inspired by the colorfulness of artworks from South and Central America, to Gal Ulman’s choice of Israeli artist, Zoe Sever, who typically paints Tel Aviv urban scenes, as his source of stylistic inspiration. The designer, Michal Negrin, and jeweler, Dori Csengeri, have both evidenced the joy, colorfulness and optimism that characterize naïve art as the starting points for their respective works, yet the resulting designs are remarkably different. Each contributor brings his/her own interpretation of naïve art, resulting in a diverse collection of designs, each reflecting the unique combination of the creator’s own signature style with the richness and variety of the naïve genre.

This collaboration is a first for GINA Gallery and for these designers, but it is by no means the first time that fashion is influenced by the art world. Throughout the twentieth century, elite designers created several important collections inspired by canonical artists: e.g., in 1949, Christian Dior created a collection inspired by impressionist artist, Claude Monet; and in 1965, Yves Saint Laurent created a collection inspired by modernist artist, Piet Mondrian.


The Art of Fashion
Fitting Room
A Basket of Golden Apples
Mama, why can't I marry now?
Fashion Week
Extra Large


Dan Chill, GINA – Gallery of International Naïve Art
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