Talk: The Aesthetic of Opulence in Early Cinema’s Costume and Fashion Films

2019 | Early Cinema's Costume Attractions

Friday 1 February, 5pm

CPH Foodspace


Focusing on issues of colour, metamorphosis, staging, perception and visual abundance, this film talk simultaneously connects and set apart early cinema’s ‘costume spectacles’ (produced between mid-1890s and 1910) and later ‘fashion films’, as they began to be regularly distributed by companies like Pathé Frères and Gaumont in the following two decades. Taking Ivo Osolsobě’s term ‘aesthetic of opulence’ as a starting point for considering these early films displaying dress, the talk highlights the shifts that took place between discourses of the marvellous and fantastic on the one hand, and the natural and authentic on the other.