​judy blame to stage first ever solo exhibition at the ICA and publish a book

We caught up with the legendary stylist, jewellery designer and i-D collaborator in the pub last night.

by Charlotte Gush
17 November 2015, 11:00am

Mailouts from the ICA about their upcoming exhibitions are always an exciting look into the future, but within the most recent edition there was one show in particular that caught our magpie eye: the first ever solo exhibition of stylist, jewellery designer and longtime i-D collaborator Judy Blame.

With just a brief paragraph from the ICA to whet our appetites, i-D took the chance to get further details from the horse's mouth when we spotted Judy at the amazing An Audience with Princess Julia at The Glory last night, where he was a special guest. This is how our chat went down...

We're excited for your ICA exhibition already, but there aren't a lot of details, can you fill us in?
Well, they only came round the other day! I had a meeting with them there and then they came over last Friday and we worked it out. The one thing I didn't want it to be - which I said to Gregor [Muir] who runs it - was a nostalgia-fest. It's called the Institute of Contemporary Arts, and I want to do something contemporary, using all my different tools. So it's going to be a bit of jewellery, a bit of customising, photos -- we're finding out a way of mixing all the things together. But it will be me with a 2016 hat on, not a 1980s kind of thing. Even though people will recognise certain themes that have always gone through my work, it will be done in a "now", contemporary kind of way.

We're gutted you left Instagram; will you ever return?!
Well, I did it without even thinking the other day, because I was used to putting up what I liked in the Financial Times every weekend. Ha! And then I find myself doing it and thinking, "I'm supposed to be taking a break from this!" So I don't think you've lost me yet, I just needed to take a break, especially working on the book and the ICA -- I know what I'm like, I'll just post it before I've worked it out! I have to be careful!

Does the book go along with the exhibition?
It doesn't, it's a separate thing. I mean, it'll include some of the work but the book is really literally about me running around -- because I'm self taught, I never went to college -- it's just how I got involved and how I developed my creativity. It's very much a backstage look. There's lots of fabulous style books everywhere and I just wanted some of the nitty gritty of it, to show people how I put it together, or where my reference came from.

Including work you made for i-D?
Well, i-D was really important for my styling career, as I said before [in discussion with Princess Julia], the stylists got a credit -- it was the first time young people could take control of fashion pages. So, of course, some massive chunks of it are going in!

Judy Blame's solo exhibition will be at the ICA 29 June -- 11 September 2016.


Text Charlotte Gush
Photography George Harvey
Styling Judy Blame and Dr Noki

fashion interviews
judy blame
fashion exhibitions