We are seeking contributions that explore fashion in the expanded field. They should embrace interdisciplinarity, experimentation and aesthetic play to critique fashion’s politics and economics, destabilise its hierarchies and widen its horizons as a medium for expression, embodiment and sociality. Tried, tested, and speculative contributions are welcome. Please read through the themes below, and identify one that aligns with the contributed activity in the embed form. You may submit up to three assignments in the form below before December 16, 2021.
Email Daphne and Laura if you have any questions about your submission or the project: firstname.lastname@example.org
Designers, curators, researchers, artists, educators, fashion practitioners, anyone from fashion education, research and industry, anywhere in the world.
Successful contributors will be reviewed by a selection panel and notified by February 1 2022 at the latest. Selection will be based on quality, originality and the diversity of practices represented by the contributors. If accepted, contributors will be supported editorially in order to prepare their contribution for publication. Published contributors will receive two copies of the book.
The image (moving and still) has become the primary medium for communication in fashion. IMAGE activities might, on the one hand, explore the smooth, high-production, digital facade of the contemporary fashion image via its key ingredients: the body, pose, and framing, or, on the other, how its conventions are being interrogated and remade through so-called ‘bad image-making’: glitches, memes, photobombs, failures, cliches, and distortions. Activities in this section can also explore new imaging technologies and address how a brand image is formed.
Text in fashion—from the fashion caption to the show review—has been essential to the seasonal systems of production and offers a way to rethink, critique and rewrite its commercial forces. Activities about TEXT explore the artistic, poetic and experimental dimensions of text in fashion, and how they can be used as methods to interrogate fashion and question its presumed materialities.
The fashion industry is predominantly organised around economic, political and cultural systems of power within the global economy. These activities attempt to shift the self-reinforcing power structures of fashion by acknowledging diverse voices, bridging differences, and drawing in the margins to propose new ways of being together through fashion. They also might facilitate collective action and dissonance, critique hierarchies, forge communities and create conversation and exchange from the grassroots up.
Dreams can be positive, utopian visions, but in fashion, the material reality of these utopian reveries are oftentimes veiled nightmares. With the materialisation of fashion dreams also come images, representatives, offshoots, copies, and other media attendant to the products of fashion. Activities here might explore dream-worlds—utopian and dystopian—that relate to fashion as a collective mental state and the poetics of possibility.
Fashion’s newness is never new; it continually self-references and reaches back into the past. The study of fashion history is both systematic and interpretive, it narrates the present as much as it does the past. Activities addressing the theme of ARCHAEOLOGY explore new ways for fashion to engage with history and counter historical imbalances.
Behind contemporary industrial fashion and its promise for a sustainable future looms a modernist industrial system of production based on capitalist values of growth, distributed labour, profits at any cost. Activities addressing the theme of MAKING reimagines how fashion is produced, and also what it produces. This includes methods for the fashion process: construction methods, form-making, technical innovation and material explorations, at scales of both the individual body, and the global system.
Fashion is—on many scales—continually being performed. From the shifting coordinates and traditions of the ‘runway’, new modes of practice in the exhibition space, and emerging approaches in high-performance wear, this theme explores how fashion is performed today to propose new approaches for future practice. Activities explore ‘performing fashion’ in exhibition, show and film contexts; as well as ‘fashion as performance’ and innovative approaches within high performance clothing and sportswear.
Fashion has an essential relationship with the body, from the fleshy body to the hard, standardised sizing systems—both relate to the intimate embodiment of wear. It also has a habit of excluding and idealising bodies. The theme of BODY critiques these limiting and defining practices by finding ways to include marginalised or differently-abled bodies within the system of fashion. It also explores wear, a garment’s relationship to it’s real or potential wearer and the role of the body within the making and material process.
Fashion, foremost, is a system of value production and commodification. Activities responding to this theme might look at fashion’s fickle conditions of value and authenticity through the paradigm of the ‘replica’, ornament, branding and the diffusion of luxury, and exchange between different systems of value, to challenge the corporate entities that ordain what we value in fashion.