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Pictoplasma Publishing, Berlin

July 2011
ATOPOS cvc / Vassilis Zidianakis
23 x 33,6 cm / 9 x 13 in
full colour


Pictoplasma presents Not A Toy – the first book on the growing influence of Character design in fashion and art. Characters are reduced and abstract figures with a strong anthropomorphic appeal and bold graphical silhouette. Recently the same aesthetic strategy has gained a strong influence on contemporary fashion design. International artists create playful dresses, avant-garde costumes and hairstyles, re inventing the human body and sending their radical, new Characters onto the catwalk and beyond.


The vast, colourful compilation, edited by Greek cultural organisation for fashion research ATOPOS cvc contemporary visual culture, highlights an international scene of established designers, such as Issey Miyake, Walter Van Beirendonck, Maison Martin Margiela, Comme des Garçons, Hussein Chalayan or Bernhard Willhelm, features the work of contemporary artists such as Nick Cave, Olaf Breuning, Boris Hoppek, Lucy & Bart, and introduces surprising, upcoming talents – Gareth Pugh, Cassette Playa, Charlie Le Mindu, Shin Murayama and many others.

“Not A Toy is a vivacious lookbook, examining the role of beastly fashion by the likes of Maison Martin Margiela and Issey Miyake.”
Surface Magazine

The book features original essays by leading scholars in the field, including Valerie Steele, chief curator of the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology, New York, and José Teunissen, professor at the ArtEZ Institute of the Arts, Arnhem and curator of the exhibition ‘The Art of Fashion’ at Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam, 2009 and Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg 2010.

About the editor:
The ancient Greek word Ατοπος means literally the eccentric, the unregistered, the out of the ordinary. The organisation based in Athens became internationally acclaimed through the exhibition ‘RRI PP!! Paper Fashion’, presenting the fascinating history of paper garments from the 1960s.

“Not A Toy is the first book to make the connections between fashion and character design explicit — and to reflect upon them.”
Groove #130, May 2011

“The wonderful collection Not a Toy makes visible to what extent the character culture influences us.”
Style & The Family Tunes #130, May 2011

“Not A Toy starts off precisely where the textile avant-garde begins to really transform the human form into a completely different, completely independent subject.”
J’N’C 2/11, May 2011