A tension or clash resulting from the combination of two or more disharmonious or unsuitable elements.
Student Director’s Note
Welcome to Art2Wear 2022!
My journey with Art2Wear began as a sophomore in high school; attending the shows out of my love for fibers. I was entranced by each look that came down the runway, eagerly awaiting for the next designer’s work. So, I am honored to be this years’ Student Director and capture that same energy that I felt in this year’s in-person show.
I wanted to challenge the designers to not just look externally, at the physical elements of dissonance, but to pull from their own lives, experiences, thoughts and emotions. At present, it can feel like the world is in a constant state of dissonance, making this years’ theme especially appropriate. Art2Wear’s success would not be possible without the energy and time poured into this show by not only the designers but also everyone behind the scenes–thank you, dearly!
I am thrilled that you and I will go through this journey of dissonance together.
- Najeel Range / Senior, Art + Design
Watch the full show
Meet the Designers
For the last three years, I’ve owned almost exclusively thrifted clothes. I love to find hidden gems in places that no one would think to look, and it’s fun to feel like I’ve given them a new life after each piece has completed a previous one. I’ve learned to work with what I have and find the nugget of gold in something that others might see as trash. However, on a larger scale, I believe our world needs to do this as well. The amount of waste that we don’t even think about reusing has led to a completely careless and wasteful method of creation. These ideas formed the basis of Patched. Patched is made out of entirely thrifted or secondhand material, with each look composed of dozens of different pieces of clothing that are used together to form something new. However, in each look, it’s clear that these parts came from all over, and even the dissonance between each item in a look is embraced and elevated. These creations breaks down the predispositions about how clothing should be made, used, and composed. This is Patched.
Axiom is a visual representation of my experiences of cognitive dissonance. There’s a struggle between the garment and the wearer, where at times the garment obscures the shape and form of the wearer, and at times the wearer is what gives the garment its shape. I often find that there’s an emotional side of myself that I’m trying to keep under control with my more logical side. The struggle between the garment and the wearer is the same as the struggle between my logical and emotional sides. Axiom uses screen printed, laser cut, and self-quilted elements.
Long since has human society labeled the female archetype as the symbol of chaos, Western ideologies regurgitate the same tales where chaos, change, irregularity are considered negative. Female. Enter Eris. The goddess of discord, personification of chaos. Eris tells the tale of women who embrace their inner discord, who revel in nonconformity and irregularity. Even going as far as embracing the dangers that accompany it. Here we rewrite the stereotypes associated with the divine feminine as something wild, free, and ever changing. Here we celebrate the untamed, beautiful chaos that is the female spirit accompanied by animalistic familiars that suffer under that same negative stereotype. If the free spirit is art, then women are a masterpiece. In my collection I created my own fabrics inspired by surrealist paintings, handcrafted the jewelry pieces, and overall created a collection that is both chaotic
Technology as Armor
Humanity has always struggled with technology, especially with the influence social media has on our lives. For many, there is a dissonance between who we are in person versus who we present to the world online. By using filters, we don technology as a form of armor to protect our authentic selves from being judged. In many ways, social media can be empowering and allow us to connect with like-minded individuals and friends. However, in darker ways, social media can make us feel small or insignificant because we don’t look like the photoshopped influencers that infiltrate our feeds.
Technology as Armor visually represents both the positive and negative ways that social media affects us, highlighting the dissonance between who we present online versus in person. The structure of my garments replicate patterns seen throughout medieval armor such as overlapping plates and chain mail but are enhanced with technological trimmings such as CD shards and wires. These technology enhancements are applied to either positively or negatively reflect the relationship that we have with social media. In some cases, the technological additions appear to be empowering, yet when closely examined show cracks or splits exposing how we cannot hide behind technology forever.”
The concept of my collection, “Discourse,” is centered around the dissonance people feel when discussing conflicting points of view. Healthy discussion about complex and uncomfortable topics will help all sides gain a better understanding of each other and develop empathy. Besides the obvious dissonance between parties with opposing views, there can also be a conflict in oneself when pondering their personal ideology, or when admitting to being wrong. Throughout my collection, I hope to visualize a discussion between two perspectives through various knotting techniques and color interactions. The two ideas are symbolized by shades of coral and green which sit on opposite sides of the color wheel. The stages of the narrative are Argument 1, Argument 2, Conflict, and Resolution. As the argument progresses, the garments become more complex and so do the perspectives of the parties involved. The collection culminates in a garment made with modesty in mind that harmoniously incorporates coral and green. The ending represents a new, well-rounded perspective.
Externalize is centered around mental health awareness and acceptance of emotions. Each piece in my collection is themed around a different emotion or feeling that we all may experience or struggle with at times. The emotions or feelings are portrayed through abstract painting on the garments. In today’s society, showing your emotions is often seen as a sign of weakness. Because of this, most people suppress these feelings. Instead of hiding and suppressing these feelings, each garment in my collection highlights and externalizes these feelings, turning something seen as a negative by so many into something beautiful. The emotions that we feel and even struggle through are not something to be suppressed, but instead make up who we are.
When growing up in a society that wanted me to be everything that I am not, I learned to hide. I learned to mask my true identity with one that would be more accepted and understood. There is a dissonance between the way that I view myself and the way that I present myself. This internal conflict led me down a path of confusion, shame, and guilt. My collection highlights these emotions through the use of contrasting layers and surfaces on the body. These layers signify the different aspects of my identity that I felt compelled to disguise. “Facade” will challenge the viewer to look past what is on the outside, to reveal what is within.
“Subliminal Transitions” is an ode to internal struggle. The challenge of pursuing self-actualization is ongoing and facing it often stands in the way of building a strong relationship with myself. I want to manifest the feeling of this struggle over time. As an invisible force, struggle is represented as disruptive textures, generous volumes, and subtle color shifts within the pieces. The journey to building this stable relationship requires emerging from my rigid exterior. Only then will I see my body as my home.
This collection is a product of my personal experiences navigating high-functioning depression as well as the adversity associated with medication as treatment for such an illness. Through my perceivably collapsing silhouettes in the first half of my collection, I seek to illustrate the dissonance in the lives of those who privately struggle with depression but externally present themselves otherwise. The second half of my collection is informative of the unexpected and often unwelcome side effects that tend to accompany the use of antidepressants. This is visually translated through additive and subtractive textile manipulation techniques like trapunto and reverse applique. These prescriptions are not only capable of imposing undesirable side effects like weight gain, or indigestion, but that they can also manage to remove parts of oneself as well by decreasing one’s energy levels, appetite, or sex drive. In addition to the previously noted techniques, I’ve implemented original, screen-printed designs on my textiles that are each inspired by different brain scans of patients with disordered mental health. Upon viewing these prints, silhouettes, and embellishments, I urge the audience to consider my concept meticulously and to appreciate the experimental nature of the designs themselves, but more than anything, I encourage viewers to check in with their loved ones and accept that one’s exterior does not always reflect their mental stability.
SEX is a collection that clashes feminine and masculine formal wear. The collection is meant to inspire individuals to dress beyond their sexual orientation’s guidelines, as we push societies definition of normal.