17 Durban University of Technology (DUT) Fashion and Textiles students showcased their BTech exhibition which is being held at the Durban Art Gallery (DAG) from 24 October to 25 October 2018. The students created their designs for the exhibition which forms part of their annual practical component.
According to Nirma Dolly Madhoo-Chipps BTech co-ordinator for Fashion, there were a diverse range of topics covered by the 2018 students with a thematic approach, all having contemporary socio-cultural relevance. “This is an exercise of fashion curation and is the first time we are hosting their showcase at such a prestigious venue as DAG. There is a really interesting collision between fashion and the art gallery geography – this has become a hybrid space inhabited by the dressed forms and props. Students have explored issues of identity and fashion consumption and as well as produced innovative designs through practice-based studies,” she said.
Welcoming guests to the opening of the BTech exhibition was Professor Sibusiso Moyo-DVC OF Research, Innovation and Engagement, who thanked the DUT staff and students for the wonderful displays. “For us (DUT), it is important that when the students go through the programme, they are able to not just create their designs but to be able to start up their own business enterprise, which is one of the key things we (DUT) are driving at the University, in terms of research and innovation and also employable and are job creators as well. The Arts plays are very important role in society, and not in just the way we look. It’s nice to see the mix of cultural and digital designs which makes a big difference. As BTech students, they are really at their ‘cutting edge’ of designing,” she said proudly.
Also speaking at the event was designer Colleen Eitzen, who was awe-struck by the spectacular designs by the students. “One of the things to mention is that I feel intimated by the level of work and the thought that has gone into it and the amount of hours put into their work, so well done to each and every one of you. We have so much to offer to the world and South African designers are now being recognised internationally, so potential is there,” she said.
BTech fashion student Maxine Brooks, who is also a makeup artist, spoke about her designs which explored the symbiotic relationship between fashion design and theatrical make-up in fashion performances. “I created a range with the make-up to go with the fashion and to enhance the overall aspect of it,” she said.
Jamie Lynn Marais explored designing for an ‘oceanic’ cause. “I am very into free diving and getting rid of plastic from the ocean and I created these garments to try and create more awareness of these plastics that are polluting our oceans and hopefully get people to change their lifestyles a little bit. All the plastic used for my garments are all from the ocean, all the little noodles which I have used on my range, are also all from the ocean as well. All the nets that I have used have been pulled out of the ocean. I also used plastic bin bags which I cut up and croqueted to make a garment,” she said.
The exhibition is open for viewing until today, 25 October 2018, with a possibility of an extension until Friday, 26 October 2018.
Pictured: Jamie Lynn Marais explores designing for an ‘oceanic’ cause.