rad hourani kingdom art project

KINGDOM - 2019-2020

Rad Hourani’s gowns probe into the complex relationship between dress, power, and identity. The clothing we wear is a direct reflection of who we are and where we stand in society. For centuries, royalty has set a dressing standard for their subjects to adhere to and an unattainable standard to set themselves above others. Different cuts and textiles served and continue to serve as socio-political markers, setting women and men, rich and poor, apart. Rad Hourani creates an assortment of sculptural gowns to render his vision of a world led by a conscious and equal structure.

Although clothing is what allows for categorization, whether it is class or gender, this creation is one of inclusion. By using noble materials such as fine silks, velvet, or textiles adorned with sequins, all made out of 30 meters of said fine materials each, the garments appear as ceremonial vestments, both alien and familiar, ancient artifacts converging with architectural form, intimidating by their splendor. Not unlike the royal gowns of yore, Rad Hourani’s ensembles instill a sense of intrigue and respect amongst the viewers.

Nonetheless, his vision introduces a fair ruling class, secular and unidentifiable: the sculptures are created in Rad Hourani’s signature genderless anatomy that erases and encompasses both genders, accessorized with masks that conceal the identity of the wearer. By veiling all human identifiers, the ensembles present themselves as cryptic entities, powerful and transcendent. It is the lack of identity that makes the pieces all the more powerful: fear of the unknown and the incomprehensible—what is beyond human control—is the mightiest tool of control.

 

© 2019 RAD HOURANI

All rights reserved. No part of any information, images, or artwork located within this site may be reproduced, stored, or transmitted without the permission of the copyright owner.

GREARTH – 2019-2020

HAND MADE OF APPROX. 30 METERS OF 100% SILK  ( VARIABLE DIMENSIONS )   EDITION 1/1

PUREPLE – 2019-2020

HAND MADE OF APPROX. 30 METERS OF 100% SILK  ( VARIABLE DIMENSIONS )   EDITION 1/1

EVERBLACK – 2019-2020

HAND MADE OF APPROX. 30 METERS OF 100% SILK  ( VARIABLE DIMENSIONS )   EDITION 1/1

BLUSEA – 2019-2020

HAND MADE OF APPROX. 30 METERS OF 100% SILK  ( VARIABLE DIMENSIONS )   EDITION 1/1

 

PERFORMANCE  at Fonderie Darling - 2020

 

Since 2005, Rad Hourani has applied principles of architecture to invent gender-neutral patterns and works from the visceral premise of how each costume will move through the wearer. Therefore, the filmed ensembles were crafted with movement in mind, and their transformative nature was fully showcased through a choreographed performance, which allowed the sculptures to evolve through dance. The implications of dance and its tribal roots allow the body to be liberated from any constraints of dress and culture. As such, panels open up to allow the performers legs to spread and arms to raise in commanding gestures, moving up and down, in and out. While ceremonial togas and robes often restrict the wearer's movement, Rad's gowns, coming alive, represent a liberated way to live and allow the wearer to feel as though they are their own ruler.


Through ritualistic expression, dance allows for energy to manifest in the performer and for them to embody it. The hands move simply and steadily through forms that are boundless in their meaning yet suggest a fixed symbolism through their aesthetic and delivery. We leave the interpretation of these non-conventionalized and non-religious-specific gestures up to the viewer to manifest both individualistic thought and the realization of the power of personal expression beyond formal ritual. As the choreography progresses, we begin to notice the dancers' controlled, stiff behavior loosen, creating a narrative of evolution and liberation. As the dancers' energy flows through each other, their authority fades, and nobility transforms into a union of knowledge.

2:00 MIN WATCH PERFORMANCE

 

© 2020 RAD HOURANI

All rights reserved. No part of any information, images, or artwork located within this site may be reproduced, stored, or transmitted without the permission of the copyright owner.

 

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