Michael Brandt Brandt-Roberts Galleries and Yohannan “Yogi” Terrellfounder of the Columbus Fashion Alliance, have long been involved in the Columbus art scene.

Both were on the public art committee of the Short North Alliance, and this common interest led to regular conversations about creative ways to spotlight artists and engage people in art.

One such conversation was recently inspired by the work of Pittsburgh artist Gavin Benjamin, whose the work is often exhibited at the Brandt-Roberts Galleries in the Little North. His work sits at the intersection of media, history, and fashion, which led Brandt and Terrell to consider combining their own talents for an event that delves into the intersection of art and fashion. the fashion.

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“Fashion is art” will start May 7 during Hop Gallerya walkable event featuring collaborations between 10 pairs of visual artists and fashion designers exhibited at 10 Short North galleries.

The event will show where these two industries connect.

For Brandt and Terrell, the resulting work will come as a bit of a surprise. They did not prescribe or require any specific type of production from artists.

“I try to stay out of the creative process because I want to be inspired and surprised and experience it with everyone,” Terrell said.

One collaboration they had the chance to preview was between Benjamin and Everett Johnson, a St. Louis-based handbag designer.

Johnson’s bags for the collaboration are from a collection he created after the murder of george floyd in Minneapolis, resulting in politically charged, almost sculptural pieces. And for his part, Benjamin, knowing the motivation behind the bags, took still lifes of the pieces.

“We’ll have some still lifes of Gavin that he created with the bags hanging on the wall, but then we’ll have the (Everett’s) bags on pedestals, almost like sculptures,” Brandt said.

The event will be an opportunity for the artists and fashion designers involved to see their work presented together in a gallery.

“Seeing people being able to elevate their work in a different way puts them in a different circle, in front of different people, and (it’s) valued for its creativity and not just its function,” Terrell said. “It also provides designers with never-before-seen opportunities in ways they never thought they could.”

The chosen fashion designers leaned into their artistic side, as many of them are artists themselves, where fashion is just their medium of choice, Terrell said.

“Fashion is an art,” he said. “Whether the backing is cotton or canvas.”

Terrell wants to see more unique creative experiences like this come to Columbus, where the creative scene is highlighted and introduced to a wider audience.

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On the fashion side, he envisions a design and apparel district in Columbus, as a space where art, fashion and culture can coexist. Miami’s Design District is an example of what this could look like.

This conversation is still in its infancy, but Brandt said the “Fashion is Art” event is one of the first iterations of such an effort. Terrell and Brandt plan to make it an annual event and even bigger in the years to come, like Columbus’ version of the Met Gala.

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In one look

The “Fashion is Art” exhibition will take place from 4-8 p.m. on May 7 during the Short North Gallery Hop. The event will also include performances by the Short North Alliance and a post-celebration at Moxy Columbus. The exhibition will continue until May 29.

Here are the participating galleries and artists and designers:

• Galeries Brandt-Roberts, 642 N. High St., presenting works by Gavin Benjamin, Everett Johnson; brandtrobertsgalleries.com

• Emergent Art + Craft, 14 E. Lincoln St., with works by Kristen Mimms Scavnicky, Dr. McLeod; emergentartcraft.com

• Hammond Harkins Galleries, 641 N. High St., with works by Melissa Vogley Woods, Xuena Pu; hammondharkins.com

• Lindsay Gallery, 986 N. High St., with works by Amber Groome, Meghan Kerr; lindsaygallery.com

• Marcia Evans Gallery, 8 E. Lincoln St., with works by Veena Bansal, Ryan Orweiler; marciaevansgallery.com

• Sarah Gormley Gallery, 988 N. High St., with works by Sarah Hout, Joan Madison; sarahgormleygallery.com

• Sean Christopher Gallery, 815 N. High St., with works by Chris Thalgott, Suzanne Cotton; seachristophergallery.com

• Sharon Weiss Gallery, 20 E. Lincoln St., with works by Edmund Boateng, Dandy Kingzman; sharonweissgallery.com

• Sherrie Gallery, 694 N. High St., with works by Ron Isaacs, Darsy Amaya; sherriegallerie.com

• Studios on High Gallery, 686 N. High St., with works by Jen McCracken and Bev Whiteside, Voszi Douglas; studiosonhigh.com

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