Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Designing With Conscience Symposium

As part of the on-going Year of Eco-Exhibitions, and in conjunction with Fashion Conscious, curators Susan Taber Avila, UC Davis design professor, and Julia Schwartz, freelance writer, designer and UCD Design alum (’05), present Designing with Conscience, a speaker symposium looking into the fashion industry and the move towards eco-consciousness. The dynamic line up of speakers includes Elissa Loughman, environmental analyst at Patagonia, Lynda Grose, consultant for the Sustainable Cotton Project, and Sasha Duerr, director and founder of Permacouture Institute. The final presentation will be a moderated panel discussion; four designers from the exhibition will address the compromises necessary to promote responsible design. With all the contradictions and conundrums in the sustainable realm, this exciting afternoon will help everyday fashionistas make informed decisions.

Please click here to register for this free event.

When & Where:
Designing with Conscience/Fashion Conscious
Sunday, May 18, 2008 at 1 p.m. in the Technocultural Studies building on the UC Davis Campus
(located behind the Art Building)
Reception and Design Museum Opening to follow.

Featured Speakers:

Elissa Loughman is the Environmental Analyst at Patagonia. Her primary responsibility is to research the environmental impacts of Patagonia’s operations and their products. She is currently working on measuring the ecological footprint of Patagonia’s supply chain and reporting those results in Patagonia’s Footprint Chronicles. Elissa has been working on environmental projects for Patagonia for three years. Prior to working in her current position at Patagonia, Elissa worked as an Environmental Specialist for the City of Ventura where she implemented various environmental and recycling programs within the City. Elissa has a BS degree in Zoology from UC Santa Barbara and Master’s degree in Environmental Science and Management from the Donald Bren School of Environmental Science and Management.

Lynda Grose has worked in the fashion industry for 25 years and has had a focus on sustainability for most of her career. She developed curricula for sustainable fashion design at California College of the Arts and Academy of Art University, and has taught sustainable fashion design for 6 years. Lynda is an independent designer/consultant based in Muir Beach California. Her clients span non-profit organizations, corporations, farmers and artisans and include Sustainable Cotton Project, Gap Inc, Marketplace India, Aid to Artisans, Indigenous Designs, 13-Mile Farm, Patagonia, Aveda, USDA, and Greenpeace. From 1987 to 1995, Lynda designed for Esprit. She co-founded Esprit’s ecollection which was launched in 1992. She received a BA honors in Fashion Design from Kingston University, London.

Sasha Duerr is an artist, designer, and educator working with organic dyes, alternative fibers, and the creative reuse of materials. Her work is a cross-pollination of textiles and environmental systems thinking, inspired by ecological principles found in Permaculture, as well as regenerative design for food, clothing, and shelter. Her handwoven textiles, dyed with a revival of nontoxic, organic place-based recipes, investigate nature and nurture and have been widely exhibited in the United States and Japan. In 2007, she founded the Permacouture Institute with the Trust for Conservation Innovation to encourage the exploration of fashion and textiles from the ground up. She holds an MFA in Textiles from California College of the Arts.

Amanda Shi is a trailblazing designer who launched Avita with a purpose: to create glamorous fashions using sustainable materials while maintaining a firm respect for the environment. After designing for other lines, Amanda decided to launch her own line in 2003 with an initial collection of twenty-five styles that re-imagined cashmere as a year-long wearable fabric. Because extra material is often discarded in the manufacture of cashmere, Amanda realized that she did not want to be party to unconscionable waste. So she devised a way to use the extra material as a way of preserving natural resources.

Armour sans Anguish garments are constructed entirely from salvaged and recycled materials. Since 2004 designer and proprietress Tawny Holt has been committed to reclaiming what might otherwise be wasted to create clothing that is at once both shamelessly romantic and wearably modern. Working from her studio in California's lush Central Valley, Tawny reclaims garments and fabrics from her inspiring surroundings and sends them off into the world utterly transformed. Each Armour sans Anguish piece is one-of-a-kind.

Anna Blossom Cohen worked as a designer in the fashion and textile industry in Florence, Italy for Max Mara, Patrizia Pepe, Guess and Binicocchi. She returned to the US in 2004 and worked for Adidas co-designing the Women's Performance lines for the US market. In 2004 she was one of fifteen designers selected worldwide to participate in a fashion design competition and showcase in Florence Italy; awards were given by Ferragamo, Pucci, and Pitti Imagine. Anna has now returned to the US in Portland, Oregon, a center for sustainability, to create this "Italian street couture" line of sustainable fashion apparel.

After graduating with honors from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in San Francisco in 1999, Tierra Del Forte headed to New York City to design for Mudd Jeans. Working in the mainstream fashion industry and visiting domestic and international garment factories opened Tierra’s eyes to the destructive impact that the fashion industry has on the environment and on the people who make the clothing. In 2005, she returned to California with this new awareness and a desire to focus on a more high-end, sophisticated and eco-conscious clientele. To accomplish this goal, Tierra started her line of premium organic denim, Del Forte Denim.

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