Dress is a twenty-five minute choreographed performance devised by Shelley Lasica, where a solo performer interacts with a series of costumes designed by Martin Grant. Interrogating how the body behaves, and can be arranged by the physical conventions of clothing, the work was conceived as a response to experience of looking and being looked it. Scrutinising the objectification of the female form, Dress interweaves histories of ‘embodiment’ and the theatricalisation of ‘the nude’ through a play on theatrical devices and the logic of the gallery.
Initially presented at Anna Schwartz Gallery in 1997 for Melbourne Fashion Festival, Dress is performed within a gallery setting in close proximity to the audience. The work was recently reactivated 22 years later for the exhibition Never the same river at Anna Schwartz Gallery. The performance of the work in 2019 prompted a response to the shifting relationship between the female body, representation, agency and the process of ageing.