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Graduate Spotlight: MA Costume Design for Performance student Chloé Gervais

Heloise by Chloe Gervais. Photography: Paul Bevan
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Published date
15 December 2016

As part of our LCFMA17 Graduate Spotlight series MA Costume Design for Performance graduate Chloé Gervais spoke to LCF News.  Chloé Gervais studied Costume Design and Construction in Cannes, south of France prior to starting her MA. Chloé spoke to us about the inspiration behind her final project and her time at LCF.

Heloise by Chloe Gervais. Photography: Paul Bevan

Heloise by Chloe Gervais. Photography: Paul Bevan

My final project…is based on Marcel Aymé’s short story Héloïse. It explores identity and gender through an evolving costume. Fragmented between his original self and his newly discovered feminity, the main character is represented through two living bodies; a down-to-earth Martin, and Héloïse – a sculpted material irrationality brought to life. Focusing on metamorphosis, the final performance is the demonstration of this duality.

My top tips to new students…would be to take advantage of the many facilities that are available at LCF, experiment with new things and stay dedicated when it gets difficult!

I chose LCF because…I was familiar with the college and its academic system. I chose this course because I felt there was more to learn and it was the right time and place to develop my work, with total freedom of interpretation – this is rare in the industry.

The highlight of my course…was the freedom to explore given themes, and the precious advice and guidance from our tutors.

The challenge…was managing to complete my final major project – from initial concept to final performance, in a relatively short amount of time, while staying dedicated under all circumstances.

Heloise by Chloe Gervais. Photography: Paul Bevan

Heloise by Chloe Gervais. Photography: Paul Bevan

The best thing about studying in London… is the cultural diversity, access to museums, exhibitions, the performing arts scene and programming. Some of my favourite places include Sadler’s Wells, The Place, Barbican, and the National Theatre.

On work placements… I did some collaborations with digital design for an installation during Markings Festival, and whilst on my course I continued preexisting projects in France.

My biggest inspirations and muses are… Louise Bourgeois, Robert Wilson, Grayson Perry, Emilie Faif, Alejandro Jodorowsky, Michel Gondry…the list goes on!

Now that I have finished my MA… I am moving back to Paris to work in film and theatre as a costume designer. I think the course has broadened my knowledge of different ways to make or construct a design, and it will surely influence my creative process in future projects.

LCF is moving east… and I think that east London is probably the best place to be – you’re surrounded by an inspiring and creative environment. The cultural and lively neighbourhoods make it a great location for arts students.