Performance doesn't necessarily mean standing on a stage in a pair of tap shoes in front of a seated audience – movement is involved in a wide range of different practices. In the fashion industry, it is essential to use motion to allow for garments to be seen from different angles, fabrics to be pulled in alternate directions and to help in the deliverance of a collection's message.
One emerging brand which uses motion in this manner is Di Petsa. Originally from Athens, 25-year-old designer Dimitra Petsa set up her brand while studying at Central Saint Martins. After graduating from her MA fashion course in 2018, this young designer is set on challenging societal taboos around the censorship of female emotion and wetness.
Designing garments which highlight and celebrate the often-shamed and hidden idea of female fluids, Petsa creates wet-look clothes in different forms. Some pieces appear stuck to the skin, while others have more of a shock-factor. It is this exact response that Petsa is challenging by designing pieces with nipple leakage and urine stains. Yes, you read that correctly. But it is how she presents these to the public, which is even more impressive.
With her graduate show in 2018, rather than watching from the sidelines, Petsa decided to place herself amongst the spectacle. Choosing the term 'wearer-performer' over 'model', this Greek designer has since developed her shows into a slow-moving performance. As the women move around the show space, water is also present, carefully sloshed onto bodies and garments adding to the already 'wet' look. Balletic arms and contemporary styled footpaths dominated the presentation, alongside real moments between the women.
If you're questioning who would wear these 'dripping' garments, think Jenner. The youngest of the five sisters, Kylie Jenner and her daughter Stormi were both pictured in custom wet-look pieces in campaign images, and video content for one of the billionaire's makeup drops back in January. When trying to reclaim female sexuality through wetness, who is a better model than a member of the sexiest family in the world?
By Niamh Rooney
Illustrations by Poppy Quy