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Foundation 2021: Fashion and Textiles

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Composite image of lattice objects
Composite image of lattice objects
Charlie Deakin, Foundation in Art and Design
Written by
Teleri Lloyd-Jones
Published date
06 July 2021

As our Foundation students move to the next stage in their creative education, we catch up with them to hear about their final projects and look back over a year unlike any other.

Davide Passalacqua

"Inspired by the Medieval era, I created a wool coat experimenting with exaggeration of the hourglass silhouette. The Axe Heels are a representation of the ferocity of the Fashion System. 'Walk and leave a mark' is the statement this shoe screams. It is an ambitious project that has led me to develop my way of shoemaking in metal and it is forged with my seat and design to create something epic.I'm motivated to create future pieces of untameable and wearable art.

Following your year in Foundation, and also working through various degrees of pandemic lockdown, what matters to you now?

"Delivering complex and well tailored garments within the shortest time possible. Researching new sewing approaches and materials has now become my biggest priority."

Davide is going on to study BA Fashion: Fashion Design with Marketing.

Myah Hasbany

“My project is an exploration of the idea of American Exceptionalism versus the reality of America. American Exceptionalism is generally defined as the idea that America is better, smarter, stronger and uniquely different from every other country. As an American I believe none of this to be true and I wanted to explore why other people did, even when so much evidence exists to prove that it isn’t exceptional. Overall, I feel as though America is constantly trying to be something that it isn’t, so it’s a constant false presentation. I found this grimey underbelly of American identity to be incredibly interesting and somewhat untapped. American pride is something that is a part of everyday life in the US, the propaganda of it is everywhere, yet Americans never talk about it. I wanted to capture how it feels to live under this blanket of pride while not believing in any of it..”

Following your year in Foundation, and also working through various degrees of pandemic lockdown, what matters to you now?

"I think working through lockdown and in person made me realise how important it is to be surrounded by people who are just as passionate as you. While I think comparing yourself to other people can be negative at times, I think it’s also really beneficial when done in a healthy way. Looking around and seeing how talented everyone else is makes you want to better yourself as much as possible. Especially because the excitement of others to create great work often has a huge effect on your motivation.  It shows you how far a project can be taken, or how differently people can interpret a brief."

Myah is going on to study BA Fashion: Fashion Design with Marketing.

Charlie Deakin

“My project, Homo/Hetro, is about tension and queerness, some of the foundation projects for me were connected and were explorations of my identity – and more specifically my queer identity. So, within this project I thought that I would do this more overtly, looking into queer British history and art. The key research for the project is Francis Bacon and Leigh Bowery, exploring the themes: seeing/not seeing, queerness, concealment, tension and flamboyancy – experimenting with knitwear to explore these themes.

Within the stretched knit samples, the queerness comes from the drama of the shapes created by the knit when stretched, there is a feeling of exuberance and opulence created from this - the immense detail and myriad of shapes created through this revealing of the knits structure results in a feeling of queerness and flamboyancy for me.

Queerness for me is forceful - an unapologetic self – and within these knit explorations by suspending them in this tense state this force can be felt within them.

Following your year in Foundation, and also working through various degrees of pandemic lockdown, what matters to you now?

"Lockdown forced my practice to be quite isolated, which helped me develop a sustainable independent practice that fuels itself. But going into the Archway campus, being in the environment and speaking to tutors, technicians and other students pushed the direction of Homo/Hetro into places that I wouldn’t have taken it if I was working in isolation. This has shown me the power of talking and considering other perspectives and approaches, I think it has allowed me to develop my project in unexpected and unforeseen ways. It’s shown me the importance of listening and stepping out of the comfort of isolation and total independence."

Charlie is going on to study BA Fashion: Fashion Design with Knitwear.