In 2013, a tragic event occurred in Bangladesh where unfortunately a busy garment factory collapsed taking the lives of 1134 people. What made this event even more horrific was the fact that it was entirely preventable. The owners of this factory ignored the complaints from staff members by threatening them with docked wages and in some cases violence if they were to further their complaints. Even after ten years on this catastrophe continues to be a reminder of the terrible relationship between the fashion industry and their lowest paid workers.
Since this disaster – Fashion Revolution, a global network of activists, were formed to enact change to the fashion industry to prevent future events following this one. To create awareness, these advocates started Revolution Fashion Week which takes place between the 18th and 24th April.
Created more with the idea of a “anti-fashion week”, this concept includes a reimagination of the equitable fashion system and look through a lens of money and power.
With a selection of workshops, clothing swaps, panel talks and catwalk shows, this ranges and presents work from over 90+ countries.
“We will go back to our core, exposing the profound inequalities and social and environmental abuses in fashion supply chains, showcasing inspiring new designers and thinkers all over the world who are challenging the system with solutions and alternative models.”
Orsola de Castro, co-founder and global creative director.
To give more of an insight into some of the exhibits, here is more information with examples of the artist’s work.
“An immersive exploration of artefacts found in the Human Residuum”
Central Saint Martens graduate Matthew Needham will be holding a solo exhibition incorporating the use of scent, sight and sound in a immersive experience with 15 upcycled pieces forged from post-consumer clothing presented as the “artefacts of our time”.
A WORKSHOP WITH MARIAH ESA’S WORKSHOP
In collaboration with the Fashion Open Studio, Mariah Esa is hosting a tapestry- making workshop at a factory in Leicester. After just launching her second upcycled collection, the designer is hoping to shine a light on the positive work being produced at the “heart” of Britain’s garment district.
In this workshop, techniques will be taught such as stitching techniques for large-scale murals that combat the over production of textiles whilst still encouraging waste reduction.
A RANGE OF FREE PANEL DISCUSSIONS
A range of panel discussions will be livestreamed throughout the week. In these talks there will be discussions on some of the fashion industry’s most debated and different talking points. For example, “fashions obsession with wealth”, “shaping the true price of fashion” and “why do we still need a fashion revolution?” With contributions from fashion industry experts, these discussions range from all areas of expertise. Making this worth the listen!
GOOD GANG TUTORIALS
Good Gang is a collection of Parisian members that will be holding workshops in order to teach the public on how to fix old clothing. A perfect way to reduce the overconsumption of fashion use. These classes focus on the concept of creative repair and the fun in reworking a once previously loved piece of clothing into a current one.
Whilst the main point of Revolution Fashion Week is to re-address the relationship between the fashion industry and a consumers perspective, the fashion week will also show pieces and exhibitions on emerging sustainable designers. On the Friday, a Project-runway styled competition will go ahead, encouraging students to excel in their talents and creations. The winner of this competition will be announced from a public vote following days later.
Two different book clubs will occur within this week. These contrasting between – Canadians discussing consumerism, colonialism and climate crises in Aja Barber’s “consumed” and fashion revolutionaries discussing “Money Fashion Power” fanzine. Both these talks go into great detail about these topics.