A recent Textiles Exhibition called ‘Interwoven’ held at the GAFFA Gallery in Surry Hills June 25th –June 30th highlighted the work of established and emerging textile and fashion designers of the Design Institute of Australia. The collection of work explored both traditional methods and innovative techniques demonstrating contemporary innovation in Australian design.
The group of 7artists included recent Design Institute Textile GOTYA recipients in Donna Sgro 2007 and Kylie De Boer 2009 – who also won the Best overall Graduate of The Year Award across all categories.
Octopus’s Garden (select garments)
Donna Sgro is a fashion and textiles designer based in Sydney. Donna was recently a winner of the 1st SHINMAI Creator’s Project, an initiative by the Japan Fashion Week Organisation for new designers around the world. The Octopus’s Garden range was shown at Japan Fashion Week in Tokyo in March this year.
Drawing inspiration from the deep sea world, Octopus’s Garden features inter-mixable styles that layer in different combinations, morphing with changing desires. Each garment is designed as a transeasonal piece that can be worn year-round, extending the life-cycle of the garment.
Fabrics for the Octopus’s Garden range were developed in collaboration with Japanese manufacturers. Morphotex (Teijin) is a nanotechnology fibre that mimics the wings of the Blue Morpho butterfly, utilising the mechanics of light refractions to colour the fibre (no dyes are used). Donna developed textile prints in collaboration with Australian sponsor, Screenhaus.
Kylie De Boer
Developed as Kylie’s graduating body of work, Metrik examines the relationship between architecture and the body. Comprising a thirty piece textile collection consisting of three smaller textile series, Bridgework, Geosilk, and Lazermetrik and eight piece womenswear capsule collection, Metrik explores innovation and conceptual fabric development. Focussing on innovative fabric development through the exploration of traditional and industrial techniques onto unexpected fabrications, such as neoprene, leather and silk, the collection examines man’s interaction within the structured world, through exploring architecture in the built environment. An integration of industrial surface textures and fittings references an architectural landscape. Strong, geometric designs juxtaposed against soft silk organza explores the space between human life and structured steel. The collection seeks to challenge traditional practises to push the boundaries and create the unexpected
The eight piece womenswear collection and jewellery pieces express the versatility of individual textile designs within the overall collection. Forming part of the entire body of work, the garments reiterate the notion of architectural structure through an investigation into form, and considered textile placement.
Sophie Seeger of the Seeger gallery
Seeger Gallery arthouse fabrics… living, breathing, natural, artworks
The arthouse fabrics are developed from, or inspired by, original paintings by artists represented by Seeger Gallery. “I wanted to bring art directly into the home in new formats; and in ways that were accessible and comfortable. The Indigenous designs reflect the oldest living art culture in the world; and the Deco Revival designs illustrate the continued strength that Deco motifs play in the minds of decorative art.” Sophie Seeger
Lesley Hunt of Inscript Design
Silk and wool rug called Starburst.
I’ve always been fascinated by the colours, patterns and textures of antique and vintage textiles, especially from Asia . I’ve been collecting pieces of vintage Japanese kimono and obi fabrics for years. I’m intrigued by the way traditional motifs are constantly re-interpreted and re-presented in Asian textiles. The stylised patterns often look very modern and bold, and then you realise you are looking at something created in the 18 th or 19 th century.
With these designs I wanted to re-interpret the textiles and re-present them for 21 st century Australian interiors in the form of Tibetan-style hand knotted rugs. I wanted to maintain the link between the original handcrafted, hand printed or embroidered nature of the textiles and the modern objects. Handcrafted objects speak to us across time and across cultures in a way that machine-made ones cannot. You can see the maker’s hand in them and the care that went into crafting them. Every knot in these rugs was tied by hand.
These beautiful quality handmade rugs can be used to add colour, warmth and character to modern interiors. The wool and silk yarn has a luxurious feeling of softness under your feet. The silk fibres catch the light and gleam against the matt wool yarn, intensifying the rich colours and highlighting the patterns.
Fiona Todd of Vigilantia
Crown of Isis
Vigilantia is an elegant and modern women’s wear clothing label based in Sydney. It is the conception of designer Fiona Todd, who has been working in fashion for the last five years, both in Australia and in London. The clothes are made from the most ethical natural fabrics available on the market today and include bamboo, organic cotton, hemp, peace silk, organic wool and soy. Vigilantia will be officially launched by the end of 2009
I love that art can merge with a basic necessity such as clothing. I wish to bring unique, beautiful and socially/environmentally sensitive clothing into this world
Angela Nash Ampersander
East Timor Connection
Woven cloth called tais plays an important role in East Timorese Culture
and ceremony. The colourful effect is achieved through a combination of
weaving and ikat techniques (a system of tying the yarn before being dyed
– like tie-dye). Motifs represent local area and family. These fashion
garments have used the tais as a starting point, both as a material, and
inspiration. Ampersander Winter 2010 will follow this theme. Tais cloth
was donated by East Timor Women’s Association, an Australian NGO fostering
enterprise and community.
Pip Willy www.pipwilly.com
‘Pip Willy’ is the innovative design company run by Philippa Wilkinson, a Sydney based Artist/Designer. Currently Philippa designs and makes highly original homewares from one off pieces of special hand printed fabric. Philippa’s inspiration for her current Textile ranges originate from travel where she acquires individual fabric and combines eclectic ideas for a conceptual hand drawn spontaneous approach. The results are gorgeous unique pieces which can be customized for your home. Philippa has always been attracted to the Arts for as long as she can remember and completed her Bachelor of Arts with a major in printing and drawing from the College of Fine Arts in Paddington Sydney. At Art School Philippa explored many techniques and had exhibitions in different media amongst the studio disciplines of drawing, painting and printing and has since been honing her craft in the world of commercial textiles. Her Fine Arts background is the main drive in her Textile Design work. ‘To keep a conceptual hand drawn spontaneous approach is very important and looks very different from solely computer generated commercial textiles’
The Textile Practice Group run by Philippa Wilkinson approximately 3 times a year aims to offer a community for textile Designers. The Design Institute of Australia is a professional body for Designers and creates a network across the areas of Education, Industrial, Graphic, Interior Residential and Commercial.