Zoe Bradley is a London-based sculptor working with one of the most fragile of materials – paper. Pleating, Curling and smoothing out the paper pieces, she creates impressive large-scale installations that adorn the shop fronts, commercial expositions and fashion shows such mega-brands as Christian Louboutin, Alexander McQueen, Louis Vuitton, Mont Blanc, Tiffany&Co., Missoni.
Her success as an artist with a world name was predefined with a long apprenticeship in the workshops of high fashion of Alexander McQueen. She was going to become a fashion designer, but the experiments of the famous fashion designer in the architectural drama of the silhouettes, its unconventional layout simulation using ancillary materials – cardboard, plastic, paper, etc. – eventually led the young artist to a particular type of contemporary art, largely a part of haute couture. His new creative role Bradley first announced at the fashion show fall-winter collection Michiko Koshino 2005-2006, for which an aspiring fashion designer has developed a swimsuit, spectacular headpiece and luxurious low-cut dress, which is a “spontaneous” deconstructivist Assembly of pleated patchwork black and white paper.
However, in earlier Alexander McQueen was the first independent paper works Bradley. So in the spring / summer collection 1999, critics noted the futuristic vest with a high wing-shaped yoke and at least extreme model kilt with classic openwork perforations in the style of English collars of the XVI-XVII centuries.
The wizard, who demonstrated incredible artistic potential of paper, came and decor showcases the branded stores of the premium market, for a major London Department stores, which received, finally, low-cost, but not less spectacular and aesthetically-perfect way of decoration of showcases and trade fairs. For the company Tiffany&Co. Zoe Bradley’s team has created a series of fascinating winter Christmas installations on motives of fairy tales: narrative scenes with models of paper and delicate decorative backdrops and scenes made with Lacy laser perforations. For Christian Louboutin designer invented a decoration in the spirit of summer European beach 1950-s, and the commercial centre, the Burlington Arcade was decorated with beautiful cascading “chandelier”, consisting of floral arrangements in rich spring and summer colors.
Paper design and floral motifs today are very popular among customers. Bradley manages to skillfully simulate not only classic roses and chrysanthemums, peonies, poppies, lilies, begonias flowers, Apple and cherry trees, fern leaves, Laurel etc. For example, an interior installation for the London Design Week 2016, which is a two-meter ball gown, embellished with 400 colors in the digital ratio is a arrangement of roses (2500 petals), chrysanthemum (petals 1188), cherry and Apple blossoms (petals 3500). Only 17 500 folds!
Commenting on the choice of material, the young artist says: “the Advantage of paper is that it is “infinite”, it can be easy to find and use in large quantities. The only drawback of the sculpture are easily deformed and torn. Ultimately, this is a very delicate and fragile texture. In most works, I use metallic paper which holds its shape while pleating and stucco decoration, glitters and texture reminiscent of silk.”
Exhibition project for Sotheby’s
One of the last major projects of Zoe Bradley was a collection of sculptural works of art-Sotheby’s galleries in London. Winter sales cycle pieces of furniture, household items and wardrobe of Royal and aristocratic European families accompanied the special exhibition project: the sculptor has created several works of art inspired by the classic fashion of the Old world.
“It’s all started with a meeting with the expert to Sotheby’s Concilum O’reilly (Jonquil O’reilly) who told me interesting stories about clothes and opened the causes of various styles, – says Zoe Bradley. I began to study paintings, books on costume history and archival Tushev drawings depicting the fashion of a bygone time. Rich wigs decorated with feathers, flowers, birds and a dusting of wheat flour, was awesome! We also worked on the winning pitch, trying to recreate the luxurious texture of fine fabrics with the help of paper.”
Among other sources of inspiration for the sculptor calls the same modern and classic architecture, the art of theatrical scenery, the work of Wedgwood and William Morris, rural landscapes and creations of the great couturier.
Exhibition project for Sotheby’s
Decorating project for the Burlington Arcade
Decorating project for Missoni
Decor showcases brand Smythson
The decor of the Windows of the KaDeWe
Decor showcases for Mappin