From a look back at Australian avant-garde to an exploration of fashion and geology, work by the RMIT community stars at this year’s Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival.
Recent fashion graduates will feature in the National Graduate Showcase, while a range of exhibitions highlight thought-provoking aspects of fashion and design as part of VAMFF's arts program.
For the 10th year running, RMIT students will present a creative take on fashion at the First Site Gallery.
Anthropocene (21 February - 10 March) is an entirely student-curated exhibition that explores themes around the relationship between fashion and geology, the future of fashion in our evolving environment, and how we can weave new human relationships with the earth through the visual and tactile.
Co-curated by RMIT students and recent graduates Josephine Briginshaw, Andy Butler and John Brooks, the exhibition features works by 16 artists and designers investigating this new era and its implications for design, textiles, art and fashion disciplines.
With support from RMIT Link Arts and Culture and the First Site Gallery, students organised every aspect of the exhibition, from the selection of artists and designers to the show’s visual style, graphic design and social media promotion.
Co-curator and graphic designer Josephine Briginshaw said her involvement in VAMFF had already paid off.
“The exhibition has given me a unique opportunity to work with a team of ambitious and passionate emerging creatives as part of the programming for a globally renowned fashion festival," Briginshaw said.
“RMIT Link Arts and Culture are amazing: they have facilitated an influential industry partnership and ideal environment to hone our leadership, collaborative and creative skills, and have fun with our talents.”
Other RMIT events for VAMFF (1-19 March) include:
High Risk Dressing / Critical Fashion (1–18 March)
This exhibition examines the ideas and community coalescing within contemporary fashion practice today, through the lens of the Fashion Design Council (FDC). The FDC was established in 1983 to support, promote and provoke avant-garde Australian fashion. In this exhibition, curators from the RMIT Design Hub use FDC materials housed within the RMIT Design Archives to query ideas promoted by the Council while looking at its the relevance to contemporary practice today. As part of the exhibition, a new ‘collective’ of fashion practitioners will activate the space through a program of fashion presentations, performances, films, publications and residencies.
Haute Couture Houses (7 March)
Fashion curator, writer and RMIT alumnus Paola Di Trocchio traces the history of haute couture from its beginnings in the 19th century to its contemporary manifestation. Curator, Fashion and Textiles at the National Gallery of Victoria, Di Trocchio’s postgraduate studies at RMIT focused on curatorial practice, incorporating research from internships at the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
National Graduate Showcase (19 March)
Four RMIT students are among those handpicked by the festival for this prestigious runway celebrating the future of Australian fashion. The event will feature capsule collections from Master of Fashion (Design) graduate Sarah Schofield, Bachelor of Fashion (Design) (Honours) graduates Stephanie Henly and Victoria Bliss along with Bachelor of Fashion (Design Technology) graduate William Thi.
Story: Aeden Ratcliffe