An unequivocally modern collection inspired by Ottoman tradition & architecture
The Jameel Prize, conceived in 2006 after the renovation of London’s Victoria and Albert Museum’s Jameel Gallery of Islamic Art, is a biannual international award which celebrates contemporary art and design inspired by Islamic tradition.
This year, 270 artists from countries as diverse as Algeria, Brazil, Kosovo, Norway and Russia, were nominated for the award. The V&A shortlisted ten of them to show at the V&A in an exhibition that opened on December 11 and will last until 21 April 2014 when it will tour internationally. The type of design practices included in this year shortlist is broad and includes Arabic calligraphy, social design, video installation and miniature drawings.
The night before the opening of the show, the V&A announced the award of the prestigious Jameel Prize to one of the shortlisted artist. For the first time it went to a fashion designer or rather a duo of fashion designers, sisters Ece and Ayse Ege behind the Dice Kayek label, for a collection entitled Istanbul Contrast.
A modern couture collection, Istanbul Contrast is inspired by Istanbul where the designers’ cultural roots lie. The collection which portrays the city’s rich diversity of culture and religions and its Islamic art and architectural heritage, also establishes a very interesting dialogue between Eastern and Western aesthetics. The collection is represented at the Victoria and Albert Museum by three garments on display: Hagia Sophia, Caftan and Dome. Caftan is made of hand-woven lamé brocade, a material favoured by Turkey’s former Ottoman rulers while the folded cotton organdie of Dome suggests both the shape and ribbing of the domes above Istanbul’s mosques and palaces. The heavily beaded angel-winged evening coat Hagia Sophia is explicitly inspired by the Hagia Sophia Mosque.
Although Dice Kayek’s garments strongly evoke the Ottoman architecture and its craft tradition, their sophisticated shapes and precise volumes is unequivocally modern.
Dice Kayek was established in 1992 in Paris and fully draw from both its Turkish and French roots. The label has several lines, the Istanbul Contrast couture collection, is created in Paris, while other Dice Kayek ranges such as Pink and Black are produced in Turkey. Dice Kayek Istanbul Contrast collection was first shown at the Musee des Arts Decoratifs in Paris in March 2010 for the Turkish Season in France before travelling in August the same year to the Istanbul Museum of Modern Arts.
Earlier this year, SHOWstudio’s Marie Schuller collaborated with Dice Kayek to create a fashion film inspired by film noir and German expressionism which explores the complex, varied emotions of a relationship. This film, entitled Noir, features a number of designs from the label’s past collections.
Finally the Istanbul Contrast collection is featured in a new book ‘Dice Kayek Istanbul Contrast‘ created and designed by ISTANBUL’74 at the occasion of Dice Kayek’s nomination for the Jameel Prize.
Wherever you are, make sure to check Dice Kayek exceptional work.