What Artists Wear : Book review

I love books about clothes and how and why we wear what we do. Charlie Porter’s collection of essays, What Artists Wear is a satisfying marriage of art history and fashion writing. It begins with sections on Louise Bourgeois and her friendship with Helmut Lang, Georgia O’Keefe (whose three-piece suit appears on the cover), and the workwear of Agnes Martin. It’s a fragmentary, wide ranging history speckled with treasures and scenes like the cruising culture of 1970’s New York, pop art and queerness, luxury and functionality. It wraps up with more contemporary artists and how they dress, whether it signifies a state of mind or deliberately obscures it. The idea of coolness and not trying is something I’ve tried apply to my dress, with limited success – as shown by Mr. Porter, the smallest details speak volumes.

I was loaned the combat boots by Cass Lynch, and put them with this prim leopard cardigan and a lilac coat.