This Is One Fashion Show Unlike Any Other

Carla Fernández's curated performance at The O.P.E.N 2016 will blow you away

What is Dances and Ceremonies: Spring/ Summer 2017 about?

Rather than a conventional fashion show, I decided to work on a dance performance with two amazing dancers from New York, Silas and Rashaun. This show has to do with healing and shamanism; there are different ways of traditional healing around the world, and most of them have to do with love, care, silence, music and chanting or dance. I’ve done a lot of research, and this is what I’ve seen and read as a constant around the world. Silas and Rashaun will work these premises. There will also be eight models we are casting from Singapore. I'm looking forward to working with them!

What’s the most interesting discovery you’ve made in curating this performance?

I think fashion and clothing have powers to heal. Using a catwalk as a performance space, I want to create a sense of hypnosis with the movement of the garments, the sound that they make, music, light, all of which are devoted to heal and to become happy. The clothes are exposed as charms to make people feel better.  

Talk about your own love for fashion...

I really like the fashion catalogues and exhibitions that The Fashion Institute of Technology in New York makes. I like the way Valerie Steele has expressed fashion through her exhibition work and through her investigation, such as her beautiful exhibition called Dance and Fashion. I have to say that I am in love with Not Just a Label, a global website based in London and Italy: I really like it because it shows you how fresh these new designers are all over the world. I love the very radical and fresh proposals.

What other inspirations fuel your edgy designs?

One very important inspiration for me is that I see fashion not only as a garment: I see fashion in its whole history, from creating the textile, to the design and the story behind it to the final output. I believe fashion can be a very strong cultural agent.

Your work with indigenous women has changed lives...

For me, working with indigenous communities also has to do with learning a lot. I have seen how happy you can be living in the communities. I have also travelled a lot and see how many people in different countries base their happiness in consumerism. And I realised we all need a change and that fuels the work we do to ensure fair trade with communities.

How does your clothing document and preserve Mexico’s rich textile heritage?

We have been studying traditional patterning and cutting from Mexico for the last 25 years, and we use the endemic methods that are using different communities to spread innovation in design. We work with indigenous communities that want us to help them in developing new design, believing that fashion is not ephemeral and tradition is not static. We go to the communities and  sit down with them, see what they do and base ourselves in these traditional and ancestral methods they use to collaborate in new changes.

Catch Dances and Ceremonies: Spring/ Summer 2017  on 30 June, 10pm at 72-13. Find out more and get your tickets here.

Photos: Edgar Aguirre and Grupo Romo

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