The awards to the millinery students of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago were held on Wednesday, May 2, 2012. The Wenzeler Gallery was a most unique location, but perfect as the gears this company manufactures were the inspirations for the hats.
A large group of students, family, faculty and university staff, as well as interested hat lovers attended the opening reception for the dozens of items on display through June, 2012.
The photo just above shows the line of demarcation for the gallery from the plant. Two worlds that seem dissimilar, yet when one is standing among the high tech and the high fashion it is a good combination. Mr. Wenzeler is the moving force for this gallery in his company headquarters and plant. The gears are created with incredible precision as well as creativity, and are found in many of the cars we drive. His appreciation for the arts brought him to offer this venue and unique inspirational experience for the students. It is no small matter that his life is graced by a wife with excellent fashion sense, and a delightful hostess as well.
The hats that follow are only shown from one view, but each is a three dimensional creation to allow your eye a chance to recognize their relationship to the gears that serve as the jumping off point in the design process.
It was hard to determine which hat would win the several awards presented, which included the Raymond Hudd, the Dean’s award, who choses one for her own collection, and a mystery person’s donation for awards, and the generous scholarship awards of the gracious host, Mr. Wenzeler.
Some attendees are seen enjoying the festive atmosphere, and also the official photographer whose use of a ladder was essential to get the best angles. Tho he offered this amatuer the use of the ladder, it is best those shots are left to the professionals.
Click here if you want to know the News coverage by the Sun-Times There is also a photo gallery to click on within the article, and another here: http://pioneerlocal.mycapture.com/mycapture/folder.asp?event=1464922&CategoryID=2144&ListSubAlbums=0
What hat did this attendee wear? A Raymond Hudd, of course. A small gold lame with black feathers. It was great fun to show it to two of the students who graciously allowed their photos to be taken. Perhaps a few decades from now someone else will wear a vintage hat they created to another award ceremony with an award granted in their name. It is entirely possible, as Raymond himself started his art education in 1948 in this very school, before he opened his first shop in 1950.
Photos of the winners, you ask? No. The camera froze, which tho frustrating in the moment, allowed total attention to the event as the awards were presented. All were winners that evening, and will be on the forefront of design for decades to come.