I created a month long exhibition of some of my vintage dresses. I have a collection of around 100 dresses, ranging in era from the 30s to the 90s, though predominantly from the 50s and 60s. Using a dress form in place of a body, I added a dress to the mannequin each day. Over the course of 31 days the body-figure became more and more disfigured as the dresses tacked one upon another. Along with this I also installed an information sheet, detailing the date, what I had eaten the previous night, the approximate energy value of that, the bust/waist/hip measurement of each dress, and the associated bust to waist, and waist to hip ratio of each dress. By bringing into extreme detail what I wear, and what I eat, I was visually tracing the relation between food and figure. I feel haunted by the spectre of the ideal (or idealised) woman. She who cooks, cleans, is always immaculately turned out, and this spectre-woman is nowhere more easily seen and solidified (stereotyped) as perfected ideal (or ideal form) in image form than in the 50s. My decision to record not only what I ate, and the energy value of that, but also the measurements of the garment, and the subsequent disfigurement of the body-figure, was an exploration into the idea of the ‘golden ratio’, and the possibility for ‘perfecting’ one’s body, in order to attract, or keep, a man. The golden ratio is when a woman’s waist to hip ratio is at, or around 0.7. This is closely related to the idea of the hourglass figure, perceived by the Western world to be the most ideal female shape, though only about 8% of women have it. It is also interesting to note that the body-figure seemed to traverse the pattern of change that a female body undergoes in a lifetime. Beginning as a reasonably straight and narrow (Pre-Pubescent) shape, slowly and gently filling out (Teenage), bust and hips becoming fuller and fuller (Maiden), then the figure starts to look heavier, though still shapely (Mother) and finally, the figure begins to lose shape and definition, the hips and bust flatten out, the waist is no longer narrow, and there is little shape to the figure, from the front or the side (Crone). Overall the installation worked through a notion of how one of the most stereotyped ideals and ideals of stereotyping unhinged itself through the physical demands and mutations of its conditionality (the dresses). That is, this was a performative display of how the weight of a stereotype in the ideal of both dress and time (1950s) is deformed via repetition.