New York Fashion Week Beauty: Hourglass for Imitation of Christ

Makeup artist Robin Black for Hourglass created the striking look at the Imitation of Christ show. Imitation designer Tara Subkoff has a penchant for conceptual collections and her spring 2013 presentation was no exception. Unfolding on Saturday evening at Chelsea’s Bortolami Gallery, the show took the form of an installation with real women of all ages. Visitors were first greeted with a chorus singing Carol of the Bells with new lyrics about the modern-day obsession with cosmetic surgery.

The main space featured models from seven to 70 slipping in and out of clothes from a pile of dainty confections on the floor, and gazing at their reflections in vintage mirrors. A handful of these models also touched up their makeup using Hourglass' Oxygen Mineral Powder. A third room was devoted to images of extreme beauty with topical video montages projected on to the walls, and a group of semi-naked women cavorting with translucent glass masks. The message? “It’s about the experience of putting yourself together for the outside world, and trying to hold yourself up to depictions of beauty,” says Subkoff.

With inspirations as diverse as Brooke Shields in Pretty Baby, Vanessa Beecroft, and Pina Bausch, Black designed a look that was distinctly ethereal and surprisingly wearable. “Fresh, beautiful makeup was the order of the day,” says Black, who played up luminous skin, groomed brows, pale shimmering eyes and vivid matte lips. The one constant was the new Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick, which appeared on every model in the show. “We varied the shade depending on the woman’s coloring. And for those models in the third edgy space, we extended the lip color outside of the mouth for a more theatrical look that is not for real life.”