Open Call for Contributors
State of Fashion is a pioneering platform that explores an urgently needed radical change in fashion. Moving towards a more equitable fashion industry requires more than just changing the way we produce and consume garments, or the way we reward labour. It requires a deeper understanding of what fashion is, and of the role clothing has in our daily lives. Fashion is more than just a production system of objects for individual consumption. It is a way to communicate about who we are, how we feel, how we relate to each other. It is a way to care for communities, nature and animal species.
This broader understanding of fashion manifests itself mostly outside the framework of the dominant industrial fashion system, in places that are often not (yet) visible or that are not considered to be ‘fashion’ by the established order. The curatorial team of the State of Fashion biennial 2022 has set off on a journey to look at fashion differently: fashion as a way to connect, fashion as a way to share, and more importantly fashion as an act of care. For the State of Fashion biennial 2022 themed ‘Ways of Caring’, they invite fashion enthusiasts from different practices, backgrounds, and locations to join in a process that cares rather than produces.
For the biennial 2022, we will host a series of multiple Open Calls. Through this first Open Call, we invite individual and collective fashion practitioners - designers, artists, performers, activists, healers, farmers, educators, etc - to join and co-create the exhibition “Fashion as Encounters” curated by NOT____ENOUGH Collective. As NOT____ENOUGH Collective considers collective work as pivotal in resisting the dominant standards in fashion, they are looking for max. 9 practitioners to collectively create 3 new works, especially for this exhibition. With this Open Call for Contributors, they are looking to find creators and thinkers with radical ideas, who are willing to contribute to the biennial's plural approach, to actively challenge and transform fashion.
KEY THEMES 'FASHION AS ENCOUNTERS' EXHIBITION
State of Fashion considers fashion as a driver of positive change for cultural transformation. Are you willing to work collaboratively with peers from all over the world, to create engaging new work for this biennial? We invite you to join this Call by responding to one of the following themes. Share your initial ideas and an explanation on how the theme connects to your personal practice:
1) TRANSFORMING NARRATIVES
Transforming Narratives is a call to recognize and defy the dominant discourses and aesthetic standards fashion has been promoting for decades. We invite (fashion) practitioners that use the body as a territory of resistance, challenging the notions of gender, beauty and identity within the fashion system. This encounter looks for untold stories, unseen bodies and existing beauties that have been historically erased. Only by caring for what has been unvalued, we are able to transform hegemonic mainstream narratives.
2) EXERCISING COMPASSION
Exercising compassion is a call to care for others’ suffering, willing to collectively take action and improve for the future. We invite (fashion) practitioners that focus on collectively experiencing feelings and sensitivities that the fashion industry tends to ignore in order to avoid confrontation and discomfort. This act of care activates different emotional responses and experiences that connect us to each other through sharing and making. We seek social practices, community-centric and culturally-sensitive initiatives in fashion that address sensing and valuing otherwise, through individual and collective practices such as rituals, performances and interactions.
3) COEXISTING KNOWLEDGES
Coexisting knowledges is a call to care about fashion education. Rethinking formal ways of knowledge production in fashion at its roots is essential for transformation. We invite contributions of practitioners who radically experiment with educational practices, create space for differences and enable plural world views to coexist. There are many ways of understanding, teaching and researching that deserve recognition. We are looking for practitioners who actively question the production and distribution of knowledge, allowing plural forms of education to coexist within fashion.
We encourage people from different practices, backgrounds, and locations to be part of the co-creations. We welcome, but do not limit to, designers, artists, activists, knitters, seamstresses, researchers, educators, performers, photographers, filmmakers, writers, and fashion enthusiasts all over the world. Individuals and groups of any age, nationality and country of residence are invited to send proposals.
Selection will be carefully made by representatives of the State of Fashion Biennial 2022 curator-team (Not Enough Collective and Fashion Open Studio). In order to make decisions based on plural perspectives, 4 peer reviewers will be invited to join the selection process.
The selection will be based on the following criteria:
● Submission and completeness of the materials
● Relevance of the works, and relation with the selected themes
● Practitioner’s ability to work collaboratively and collectively
● Practitioner's ability to reflect in their work
● Initial ideas that are feasible in a 4-month working period
● Practitioners who through their work connect with current social issues
The process of co-creation will take place over a period of 4 months and will be moderated by the members of the Not Enough Collective. The process will start in February 2022 and will end in May 2022. By May, the works must be produced, reproduced and/or transported to the Netherlands. State of Fashion 2022 I Ways of Caring opens on 2 June 2022. Through online working sessions, participants will work collectively to respond to the theme of their choice. Please note that the creative process will happen online only, as applicants are spread all over the world. We are aiming to facilitate one working visit to Arnhem, the Netherlands, depending on the developments around COVID-19.
WHAT WE EXPECT
● You are available to meet regularly in an online setting
● You are willing and available to create a new program-specific work, in collaboration with two other practitioners and a member of the NOT____ENOUGH Collective, that will be exhibited during the State of Fashion biennial 2022 from 2 June 2022, for a period of minimum 5 weeks.
● You are willing and available to join one (online) public talk to share the process with the public.
● You are willing and available to organize workshops related to the selected theme.
● You are able and willing to communicate in English, unless there are other languages that all participants speak.
WHAT WE OFFER
● The possibility to connect with practitioners and collectively create new work
● Guidance, support, and openness to experiment
● An environment of care and respect
● Possibility to exhibit your own work within an international exhibition
● The opportunity to co-curate the exhibition in collaboration with Not Enough Collective, this could include selecting each other’s existing work or work by peers.
● Possibility to publish your work in a digital publication by State of Fashion
● Possibility to create media exposure for your work through the channels of State of Fashion.
● A remuneration fee (see below)
● Participants receive a total fee of € 1.500 for their contribution
● When an existing work of the participant is selected for the exhibition through the co-curation process (in consultation with Not Enough Collective) an additional fee of €300 is offered.
● Each team will receive a realistic working budget. Budget indication available upon request.
● If duos or collectives are selected, the fee will be shared by the team members.
This application form must be completed through the website www.stateoffashion.org. All interested applicants must fill in the submission form and submit the following materials:
● Portfolio (max 6 A4)
● Initial proposal (max 1 A4) (describing the practitioner's interests to the theme and motivation to apply)
● Contributor profile (CV, personal story, biography, statement, etc) (max 1 A4)
If in any case, your situation or location does not allow you to access the form, please contact us for assistance at email@example.com.
● State of Fashion 2022 | Ways of Caring opens on 2 June 2022 (public opening 3 June 2022) and ends the 10th of July 2022.
● The co-creation processes and outcomes will be exhibited at State of Fashion 2022 | Ways of Caring. Process learnings will be shared with peers and colleagues in a closing publication / event in the fall of 2022.
● The co-creation process will start in February 2022 and will last 4 months.
● Each team will be composed of a maximum of 3 applicants.
● Individuals, duos and collectives are welcome to apply.
● The co-creation meetings will take place online.
● The language of communication will be English, unless there are other languages that all participants speak.
● All works are produced locally in Arnhem, unless agreed otherwise.