State of Fashion 2021 | Intervention 03: Transition

Image from the Shanzhai Lyric archive. DO NOT WASTE YOUR CHAOS. Photo by Fan Xiaobing.

State of Fashion invited us to guest-edit the third installment in their intervention series. Following the stages of introspection and origins, our contribution will focus on transition. In our programme, we will explore what agency fashion practitioners have to provide alternative, non-capitalist, non-industrial modes and frameworks for making, doing, seeing and experiencing fashion.

As today’s fashion industry and capitalism are inseparably intertwined, it is important to depart from a distinction between the fashion industry and other forms of fashion when exploring alternative approaches. The fashion industry or industrial fashion is, we believe, just one of the many forms of fashion under the umbrella of a ‘fashion system’. However, it is this capitalist form of fashion, which is one of exploitation, colonisation and pollution, that is by far the most dominant and damaging one. In regard to the theme of “transition”, we strongly believe that we can’t fix this toxic fashion system with the same capitalist culture that has created it. Therefore, we decided to focus on and connect with several critical (fashion) practitioners who in their practice address and criticize the limits and enclosures of a capitalist fashion industry, but also show us ways and tools to opt out and create an alternative approach to fashion.

To kick of our guest-editorship, we would like to present a longread in parts, which we wrote together with 3 co-authors: Chinouk Filique de Miranda, Aïcha Abbadi and Shanzai Lyric. First up is the Warehouse contribution: ‘Fashion Against Capitalism’. You can find the longread here.