TALENT! An ongoing exhibition series featuring graduate works from the world’s leading art and design schools. Following the success of the first three editions for Designhuis in Eindhoven and Milan in 2008–09, TALENT! was curated by 8 schools from Europe and the United States on Governors Island; 800 yards off the coast of Manhattan, a historic and now cultural landmark that was also the landing place of the first Dutch settlers in 1624. Housed in two colonial buildings, the pop-up exhibition was open to the public from September 1, 2016 until September 18, 2016. New York Textile Month is a New School and Cooper Hewitt Design Museum initiative celebrating global textile creativity and innovation in events held throughout New York City.
The variety of textile approach within the different institutes showcased a comprehensive reflection on the current status quo of textile education. A new MFA in Textiles created by Lidewij Edelkoort for the Parsons school of Design is due to be launched in September 2017, and therefore the hosting university decided to exhibit graduate work from the Fashion’s Bachelor department this time. Students highlighted different techniques in using textiles for their silhouettes; from the Kookerville creatures by Lexy Ho-Tai who invented humorous monsters, simply to make people smile, constructed of found and recycled materials to the interactive designs by Kailu Guan who developed a collection of 6 looks and an accompanied smartphone app, which together display sentiments that are unique to her experiences. She developed screen-printing techniques that not only speak to the aesthetic, but are also optimised to perform as recognisable information.
The Bachelor Industrial Design program at the Polytechnic of Bari investigated the know how of mediterranean heritage, intersecting innovation with tradition. “TransHumance: a new HUMUS for textile identity” defines a contemporary expression of traditional material processes of the Apulia region in Italy, in order to achieve a transcultural comparison. Their installation showcased the importance of the research process in newly developed fibres, materials and techniques. Also the London-based Royal College of Art focussed on new materialism, expanding the boarders of 3-D printing and advanced knitting.
The Kent State University and the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth shared the top floor and used the characteristics of the colonial architecture in showcasing textile art in the broadest sense. Textile work was used in the creation of paintings, sculptures and other artefacts.
Parsons School of Design, Central Saint Martins, Kent State University, Royal College of Art, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Politecnico di Bari, Philadelphia University and Pratt Institute.
New York Textile Month is initiated by Li Edelkoort Dean of Hybrid Design Studies at The New School’s Parsons School of Design and co-ordinated by Willem Schenk.