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Scottsdale's Stylish Set Descend on Taliesin West for the First-Ever Canvas and Couture Fashion and Art Show

Aitana Yvette Mallari | May 6, 2019 | Lifestyle

A model struts in one of the couture looks of the day.

Visitors were told to expect the unexpected at Scottsdale Artists’ School’s inaugural Canvas and Couture fashion and art show last Saturday, according to designer Robert Black.

The event, presented at Frank Lloyd Wright’s stunning Taliesin West music pavilion, featured pieces from fashion history that span more than six decades, called the Fashion is Art Collection.

Inspiration was also drawn from the venue itself, a blend of Eastern and Western cultures.

“We’re mixing patterns, mixing colors, mixing eras, making it really bold and adorning it with the biggest jewelry I can find,” Black said.

The fashion show highlighted several bold fashion looks.

Although the curation for the event started eight or nine months ago, none of it has been seen by the public. Designers include Holston, Lanvin, Don Luis de Espana, Dynasty Hong Kong—all curated at Fashion by Robert Black (7144 E. First Ave., Scottsdale).

Every look and accompanying accessory will be available to purchase after the show, and prices range from $200 to $600. However, they will not be posted on the site—rather, they will be featured on Instagram.

“Everything in this [collection] is very bold.” said Black. “Jumpsuits, gowns, yarn, kimonos…anything that really makes a statement.”

The event blended new and the vintage in all elements, down to the gift bags.

VIPs received one-of-a-kind scarves made from vintage kimonos as part of the Megumi Project, which benefits women directly impacted by the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami in Onagawa, Japan.

Trudy Hays and Robert Black of Fashion by Robert Black

“Everybody received a gift bag,” Black said. “Nine times out of 10, no one really wants what’s in there. But this time it’s something special. We’re the first company to bring the scarves to the United States, and we’ll be carrying the them after the show at my boutique.”

For Black, putting together this collection was a journey outside his comfort zone. Although he’s fond of sequins and rhinestones and everything bling, he made the conscious decision to leave the shine behind. Both Black and co-sponsor Doreen Picerne see this project as a love letter to the arts and the importance of arts education in American school systems.

“Bottom line, everyone had fun,” said Black. “It was best for everyone to keep an open mind for what they were going to see.”


Photography by: Brian Goddard