Matthew Ames, 2010

If there is any worthwhile American tradition then it is the one that has been continued by designer Matthew Ames. If you must define American fashion by its masters: Halston, Geoffrey Beene, Pauline Trigere, Elizabeth Hawes, Isabel Toledo, Valentina, Perry Ellis, Norman Norrell, Bonnie Cashin, Claire McCarrdell, and Calvin Klein, surely it is Ames who speaks to both their ingenuity and their focus. It’s a strange circumstance that the driving discourse among young American designers eschews this tradition; obliging itself with something much more immediate and far less considered. Ames is alone in his task, his vantage is a rarity. This is the nature of the avant-garde, a particularly lonely territory in New York, and yet, it is also in its nature that even the most esoteric and obscure will eventually, in due time, become apparent.

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