Fail again. Fail better.

The Vestoj Residency at Palais de Tokyo

This month long residency allowed us to explore and experiment under the umbrella of the Palais de Tokyo’s La Manutention initiative, which has allowed artists to develop their practice, initiate collaborations and create new work since 2017. For Vestoj this culminated in three evenings themed as our most recent issues: On Failure, On Masculinities and On Authenticity. Each theme was investigated through music, dance, installations and performance.

Welcome to an Evening Dedicated to Failure

In a society that venerates success, few things are as alarming as the prospect of failure. To fail is to expose yourself to the judgment of others, and to judge yourself according to those same standards. It is also an opportunity to learn how to remain humble. In the fashion industry, failure is common. Recently experts have argued that fashion as a system has failed altogether, since creativity often has to make way for profit. But fashion can also fail in small ways: the story is full of trends that failed to take off and dresses suddenly splitting at the side. During one evening, failure will be celebrated. As Samuel Beckett wrote in Worstward Ho: ‘Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.’

The Chorus of Complaints

Taking inspiration from a community arts project initiated in 2005 by Finnish artists Tellervo Kalleinen and Oliver Kochta-Kalleinen, this Chorus of Complaints was all about what’s wrong with the fashion industry. The carolled objections are just some of those voiced by industry insiders in interviews given for Vestoj’s issue ‘On Failure.’

Lyrics: Anja Aronowsky Cronberg
Music: Jerome Violent
Choir: La Chorale Sauvage et Clandestine de Paris

The Makeup Malfunctions

When makeup goes awry on the famous, the paparazzi are quick to take note. Has your fake tan melted? Or your contouring gone to hell? Or perhaps your face powder is playing havoc on your chin? Well, here is your chance to feel like a beleaguered Hollywood star for an evening. Take your pick: are you a Kylie, an Angelina or a Nicki Minaj?

Thanks to MAC Cosmetics

Collaborators: London College of Fashion, Etienne Blanchot, Corneliu Dragomirescu, Romain Sanderre, Sissel Tolaas, and La Chorale Sauvage et Clandestine de Paris.

Photographs by Ayka Lux

Thank you to Vittoria Mattarese, Manon Klein and Alice Guidicenti.