For this current exhibit at the museum, which opened January 21, 2014, thirteen "established and emerging" designers were given free rein to choose pieces from the American Folk Art Museum's collection to use as inspiration for a design. As a knit textile designer I'm always interested in how other designers find and use their inspirations. The thirteen designers showed a range from mildly influenced by their source material to close replication. Here are my favorites.
Yu's process here. Her inspiration was the carved wood Porcupine by David Alvarez.
Malandrino's dress was inspired by a papercut of Odd Fellow symbology. The quilt was actually an influence for a design from Fabio Costa (NotEqual).
I totally loved the effect from three laser-cut layers of patent leather for this dress by threeASFOUR.
My favorite of the show used a stars-and-snowballs motif, found on a nineteenth century coverlet, as a starting point. Gary Graham was able to have his take on the design programmed and woven on a modern jacquard loom at the Rhode Island School of Design.
|Coverlet detail (left), Graham coat detail (right)|
Graham's fabric "repeats" get smaller as they approach the top of the garment. I find it so very satisfying when textile and garment are designed or developed specifically for each other. See, hear, and read more on Graham's process here.
The American Folk Art Museum is located at 2 Lincoln Square, Columbus Avenue and West 66th Street, New York, NY. Folk Couture: Fashion and Folk Art runs through April 23, 2014.