Making With: Hybrid Practices in the Development of New Forms of Intra-active Dress
The project Phenomenal Dress explores a posthuman notion of dress as particular, dynamic surface and form that enfolds with different situations through physical and metaphysical forces. The project draws on perspectives and methods from fashion and textile design, science, technology, ecology and indigenous frameworks, to develop intra-active forms of dress that engage with and are activated through localised phenomena including human, biological and material agents. This hybridisation of dress as a nexus of technological, physiological, material, and cultural perspectives recognises matter as history and narrative, and place as having both physical and metaphysical dimensions. The different modes of working through these complex relationships, engaging a team of collaborators from diverse disciplinary and cultural positions, foreground the project, shifting it beyond a response to material properties or location as site, to an engagement with matter, media, place and forms of being, and the agential and aesthetic potential of these entanglements. The first iteration of this project is based in Karekare, a west coast black sand beach in the Waitakere Ranges Regional Park, fifty kilometres from Auckland, New Zealand.