What Would Sarah Do? assembles and splices fashion into personal narratives

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Symmetrical compositions, camera movements that accentuate emotions, close ups and extreme close ups —What Would Sarah Do? (WWSD) is a beautifully light-hearted short film marked by pensive sadness; a tinge of jealousy, exclusion, longing, unlikely friendships and FOMO. The protagonist has pretty round eyes, their twinkle dim in front of Sarah’s new hairdo. She seems submerged and conflicted by the cool kids on social media; who she terms “the populars". WWSD is rooted in familiarity —storytelling mapped through simple yet powerful personal experiences. The film is directed by Tarania Naidoo and art directed by Siwe Mlotywa.

WWSD is the recipient of the Bokeh Best Billy Preston Emerging Creative Talent Award accorded by the The Bokeh South African International Fashion Film Festival. The festival brings together creatives in the Film and Fashion industries, celebrating craft, talent and rewarding the most inspiring Fashion Films on offer —exalting fashion to the same status as other art forms. The Bokeh SA International Lifestyle and Fashion Film Festival will take place from the 11th to the 18th of July 2019 in both Johannesburg and Cape Town.

In recent years, fashion has taken on a more important role in the story of art, with large institutions such as the ZEITZ MOCAA debuting their first fashion centric exhibition and publication: 21 YEARS: Making Histories with South African Fashion Week and MOMA presenting its 2018 Show, Items: Is Fashion Modern? as examples. This new focus attaches ideas about identity as well as personal and collective chronicles to pieces of fabric where fashion functions as a new form of communication.

Through Naidoo’s film, we see fashion as perhaps one of the purest expressions of art. One that is both personal and accessible, allowing us to delve deeper into difficult issues of relationships, mental wellbeing and day to day survival.

Fashion is just another word for the constant, inevitable shifts in popular taste. Garments, just like buildings and cars and movies, can’t help but reflect the circumstances of our moment in history. That’s what fashion is. Another way of telling time. - Avery Truffleman


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