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DECADES AGO THE MODERN futuristic look was defined Shiny vinyl See-through plexi-glass Shimmery silver Slinky shapes They were not always easy to use wear or live with but they captured a moment inspired by that 2001 space odyssey we were all to make With the year 2000 mere months away those visions of what was to be the future are now retro Design going into the new millennium is less science-fiction more science-fact Inter-galactic carriers are no longer required thank you The story is not about life on Mars but about trying to make life on Earth a little better This means that the future shirt on your back will probably look a lot like the one hanging in your closet today And the much-loved little black dress will survive - with an update or two But how about a computer-aided multi-dimensional hologram to provide the necessary accent The parameters of what materials to use are evolving Guangdong-born New Yorker Vivienne Tam has already used treated paper to make perfectly wearable clothes Paper is interesting because its light and cool and actually more durable than cotton Its also easy to wash says Tam For the last fallwinter look of the millennium she gives design boundaries another nudge by experimenting with metal mesh dresses Says a Singapore fashion magazine editor Imagine the possibilities of getting together these materials traditional looks and a power outlet Plugged-in fashion at its most electrifying The interface between the man-made and the natural is shaping architecture The work of Japans Kurokawa Kisho offers a glimpse of what is ahead In his masterplan for Astana the new capital of Kazakhstan Kurokawa envisions a city protected from the sandstorms and flooding common to the area by a wall of trees and an artificial lake He used a similar approach with the Kuala Lumpur International Airport at Sepang Opened in 1998 the airport incorporates an element of the countryside it displaced The
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