It was back in 2005 that I bequeathed Anna Lee with the title “Fashion
This year’s show was all the sweeter due to its absence last year, and now popular enough to pull the lead story in all the local press, and pack First Ave to the hilt. I mean, I’ve Never seen it that full up before.
One goal of Voltage is to not just ‘present’ bands and designers, but to connect them to the audience. To that end, a well-designed “Look Book” was distributed at the show. People could pull the book out later and visually identify the designers and their designs. There were also short video interviews with the designers and bands, which aired between each segment of the show, and this helped the audience get a glimpse of their personalities. The “look book” and the videos really helped to connect the audience to the artists.
Voltage also helps the artist community in other ways. Proceeds from Voltage go to the Springboad for the Arts which helps artists gain access to healthcare, and Voltage has also birthed MNFashion.org which seeks to help designers access “professional development and resources so designers can establish a sustainable livelihood”
There are a lot of factors that make the Voltage show pretty amazing, not the least of which is that Anna Lee is behind it. While she is quick to point out that it takes many people to make the show happen, it takes someone with the moxie that Anna has to pull it off.
Another amazing fact is that the show was Packed. People want to see this, and hopefully, the success (and continued success) of Voltage, Art-A-Whirl and other artistic events in Minnesota will pave the way for more showings of art and fashion. Hopefully they can learn from Voltage to set up symbiotic relationships with the community, instead of consumeristic nonsense like the Uptown Art Fair.
Congrats to Anna Lee, her team and all the designers and artists who made Voltage a big success in 2007. Click over to http://www.voltagefashionamplified.com/ and check out the bands and designers, go to their websites, go to their myspace pages and add them as friends, go see their live shows or designer studios, buy their music if you like it, and most importantly, Spread The Word, and support local art like this. It’s something we are fortunate to have, and something people on the other two coasts take for granted.