b'BIG PICTUREartorially speaking, for manypleasures of the arts and have had to contemplate of us the pandemic periodour mortality and the meaning of life. It is through such has been all about athleisuredissonance that the folds of the soul are awakened to wear, DIY haircuts, and fuzzyreconsider the dialectic between beauty and pathos, slippers. As we look ahead tolife and death, art and fashion. the immediate post-pandemicOne day when we can once again gather together era, will we see an aestheticto rejoice in the arts, I anticipate that we will embrace mood swing towards opulent,the spirit of the baroque era in the way we choose to baroque-inspired fashion? We invited Dr. Ingrid Mida,dress our bodies. This baroque attitude encompasses art and dress historian and the author of The Dressan inclusive approach to fashion, one that is gender- Detective and Reading Fashion in Art, to indulge inneutral, since during the 17th century both men some speculative thinking.and women embraced elements of dresslike Fashiona collective notion of what is thelace, ribbons, and long hairthat are traditionally right way to look at any given timeis an aestheticgendered as feminine. FASHIONexpression of the prevailing ideas, beliefs, andThecontemporarybaroquespiritwillalso anxieties of society. Consequently, whether we arecelebrate the contours of the bodyallowing us to conscious of fashion or not, the way we adorn ourconceal aspects of our form (perhaps those pesky bodies signals aspects of our identity, including status,pandemic pounds) in voluptuous folds of cloth gender, politics, and emotional state.(think Viktor & Rolf or Rei Kawakubo)or perhaps For many of us, the global pandemic has meantreveal other parts, like a sensual dcolletage framed an abrupt shift in our sartorial preferences, and weby a lace collar or a set of shapely calves. Luxurious have sought comfort in our clothing, wrapping ourtextiles in jewel tones embellished with embroidery, FORWARD bodies in soft and forgiving fabrics that soothe ourlace, ribbons, and bows will signal our jubilant mood. fears over the state of the world.Bring on the baroque! Although it is impossible to predict what the forces of fashion will ultimately deliver, fashion is continuallyIngrid E. Mida (PhD, Art History & Visual Culture) is an recycling elements of the past to create new looksart and dress historian. Responsible for the revival of that capture the mood of the times. As we movethe Ryerson Fashion Research Collection. Dr. Mida is towards a post-pandemic world, I anticipate a revivalthe author of books, chapters, and articles on fashion of the baroque spirit, with its playful exuberance andand art, research methods in fashion and art history, abundance of ornamentation. curatorial practice, and museum studies.During the period defined as baroque (which roughly corresponds with the 17th century), fashions for both men and women concealed the natural BY DR. INGRID MIDA contours of the body with billowing folds of cloth and were ornamented with lace, gold braid, embroidery, and ribbons. Men wore flowing cloaks over tight-fitting ANTICIPATING THE REVIVAL OF THE BAROQUE SPIRITdoublets, expansive shirts, wide-legged breeches IN A POST-PANDEMIC WORLD(with legs sometimes as full as a womens skirt), and hose embellished with fanciful and seemingly endless lengths of silk ribbon bows. The gowns worn by women celebrated the gently rounded female formwith a silhouette that gave emphasis to a gently rounded stomachand that also showcased luxurious textiles like silk and velvet in exuberant folds. The philosopher Gilles Deleuze reminds us thatthesebuoyantfoldsofclothingarenot simply decorative effects but serve to convey the intensity of a spiritual force exerted on the body in this era that celebrated the arts in all its forms. During the pandemic, we have been denied the Ingrid Mida, All is Vanity, 2010. Romeyn de Hooghe, Figuresla Mode. Etching, 16701685. Rjiksmuseum RP-P-OB-55.015. Image in public domain.3'