Dada Poem Wedding Dress

by Erin on July 1, 2005


Dada Dress

In her Dada Poem Wedding Dress, Lesley Dill presents one of her enigmatic paper dresses, stamped with an image of a real biological heart (a votive) amongst black letters (Dada-style, in that the varied size and boldness of the typography suggest sound), which spell out what is only implied in Hawarden's corseted dresses: Dickinson's "The Soul has Bandaged Moments". A dip at the waist gives way to a body (there and not there), with the words "MOMENTS OF ESCAPE." Up and down the sleeves, letters straight and reversed (looking-glass-style) puff out and suck in the heaves and sighs of "THE SOUL HAS BANDAGED MOMENTS." The tight fit of the dress's bodice, coupled by its impossible wedding-dress train, gathers paper whispers of inescapable dirt and tears yet to come. This "aloof beauty" can do nothing more than wait for her dirt to be collected, wait for the rips to mar her perfection. Loose threads tangle their way off the skirt's hem and at the wrists–inviting the shredding, the ruining yet to take place. They catch me in pain with each inconceivable step, with each unforgiving gesture, like tendrils of hair caught on an unfastened hook and eye. Minuteness is all.

from Becoming: The Photographs of Clementina, Viscountess Hawarden

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

blackbird July 1, 2005 at 8:29 am

I like this sort of thing too.

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Anonymous April 20, 2006 at 1:00 pm

I have stared at this dress from many angles, for a very long time… at the Orlando Museum of Art. Find it quite powerful. – Randall

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Anonymous December 16, 2006 at 3:52 am

talk about CORPSE BRIDE! have you ever seen de movie well dats wat de dress looks like when she come back to life from the DEAD!!!!!

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Anonymous June 1, 2007 at 11:43 pm

I think I saw this piece of art at Microsoft.

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Anonymous July 17, 2007 at 1:32 pm

this dress is beautiful. it is brilliant and meaningful. i saw it at the Orlando Museum of Art also and the picture does not do it justice.

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