Sunday, 22 January 2012

DURHAM BRASS FESTIVAL 2012

I've just been selected for a commission with Durham Brass Festival to work with an architect to create a costume installation made from paper combining the costumes of the brass band movement within an architectural structure.
Documentation on brass bands, their costumes, textiles and the bandstand doesn't emphasise how highly decorative the designs were in the Victorian era. The bandstands were very colourful and highly ornate many referenced Japonism within their design. I can only guess that the uniforms mirrored this design, but hopefully I will find out more about this.The old black and white photos don't fully convey the colour scheme and craftmanship which went into making the uniforms. This must have been considerable since the majority of  a working man's wages was spent on the uniform.
It's also been interesting to discover that there were all-female brass bands. Their uniform and performance are closer to circus performance whilst male uniforms and bands are closer to the military.
Below is a previous commission from the Brass festival: Bill Morrison's 'The Miners Hymnn'.

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