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Volume 2, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 2044-2823
  • E-ISSN: 2044-2831



Online promotional fashion film has become a significant aspect of the symbolic production of fashion in the twenty-first century. This article presents a broad overview of the genre’s most prominent aesthetic and formal tendencies. Three approaches to fashion film-making are discussed: first, the non-narrative, where the status of fashion as a designed object is foregrounded; second, the conventional narrative, in which fashion acts as an aspirational symbol; and finally, the ‘organic’ narrative approach, where the visual style and the formal system of the moving image are constructed around clothing. The films discussed include Portent (2009), directed by Nick Knight, Karl Lagerfeld’s Remember Now (2010) and Once Upon a Time ... (2013), and Lucrecia Martel’s Muta (2011). The article assesses this medium in relation to its potential to challenge the existing paradigm associated with the rhetoric of fashion on the one hand, and the narrative film form on the other. Promotional fashion film, while being a form of ‘new media’, is also firmly situated within the domain of postmodernism, which may explain its limited ability to undermine the established dominant representational codes.


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