Maarten Kolk & Guus Kusters / Avifauna nigra *
When I quit fashion I thought there was something wrong with me. Thousands around the world were wearing my designs. Why would I stop? This was the place I always wanted to be in. This was the place where the money was, the place where it was all happening. I was travelling business class around the world. I could go shopping wherever I wanted and see the new hotspots wherever they were. Tokyo, New York, Paris, London or Milan. Eat in the nicest restaurants and sleep in the best hotels. Tickets were arranged for me to sit in the first row to see/hear Bryan Ferry at the Radio City Hall. Having dinner on a table next to Mick Jagger and David Bowie. A dream job in a dream life. And yet it was not where I wanted to be, or what I wanted to do anymore. It felt uncomfortable. Like I was wearing someone else’s coat.
Before the turn of the century I shifted from a horizontal focus in life into a vertical focus. From ‘having more’ to ‘doing more with less’. I started creating things without a business plan. Things nobody asked for. Without a target group in mind. My head stepped down as CEO and handed her tasks over to my heart. Without a rational way to make money. Without deadlines. Stepping out of all the known secure borders in my life was not the easiest thing to do. It was a true detox, but like with all addictions once you let go, you encounter true freedom. Stepping out from the known, I entered the unknown and arrived in the now. The heart of matter. With the letting go of the ‘wanna be’ in me, life started flowing ‘through’ me. And the only thing I need to do is ‘be’ there. Magic!
The fashion industry has become an institute like the financial institute that is making money from money based on air (while polluting the earth). The textile industry is an ‘old economy’ authority that, as it was, will soon bite the dust.
Being out of fashion is in. We are approaching the end of the industrial age, as we know it. A new relationship with clothing is on its way. Clothing that supports inner well being made in harmony with the earth and its sources.
In the meantime it’s time to create things from what we ‘have’. Move beyond. Share, recycle, upcycle, transform, revalue, cherish, restore and play, play, play.
Being free like a bird.
Krijn Giezen / Wall Hanging Assemblage
Harry Boom / Wall Hanging made out of tarred canvas and metal screws
* All works from the exhibition Rough curated by Maarten Baas & Guus Kuster in the Audax Textile Museum in Tilburg, the Netherlands.