[Exhibition] Fast Fashion at RMIT

Apologies, this exhibition has been on for a while but I’ve only just made to see it, and it closes on Saturday. If you can, I recommend it though.

From the website:
Taking a critical look behind the scenes of the fashion industry with an exhibition that undresses the social, economic and environmental impacts of cheap fashion.

How are clothes made so cheaply, by whom and under what conditions? What does this say about the quality of fashion and the value consumers place on it? What impact do the fast changing fashion trends have on the environment?

What: Fast Fashion: The dark side of fashion exhibition
When: 21st July 2017 to 9th September 2017
Where: RMIT Gallery, Swanston St Melbourne
Cost: free
More information available at the website. Click here.

Tim Mitchell, Mutilated hosiery sorted by colour, 2005. Image sourced from the RMIT site.

This image upsets me because I’m a great wearer of hosiery, and although I reuse as many ripped stockings as I can, I’m guilty of binning them eventually as I didn’t think they were recyclable. I’m reviewing that wasteful practice now.

I have some images from the exhibition which I’ll post soon – but I don’t want you to miss seeing this if you can. It’s not one of those exhibitions (like the Dior) where you float out on a cloud, enraptured by beauty and possibilities. It forces you to consider your actions and the responsibility you bear for your choices, because these are important things.

A large part of why I support the second hand industry is because I believe in reusing resources where we can, in preference to constantly creating more. I worked for fashion companies in the ’80s where local factories produced the clothing and out-workers were an issue: people, often migrants, working in their garages and being paid by the piece, not the hour – they worked long hours for not much money so that we could have nice things.

Then I worked for fashion companies in the ’90s where the manufacturing was off-shored. The production costs dropped shockingly, once workers no longer had Australian legislative oversight. It was clear that exploitation was involved and now, after the tragedy in Bangladesh in 2013 we can no longer avert our eyes.

As consumers, we hold the power to choose the businesses we support. I encourage you to choose responsibly and consider the impacts of those choices.

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