On 30 June 2022, a number of GFA22 hosting coalitions hosted an online workshop Practicing Decoloniality at the International Fashion Conference: Ways of Caring Practicing - Solidarity organised by Artez Design School for the biennale State of Fashion in Arnhem. The workshop drew on our experiences of what it means to practice decoloniality (in curating a fashion programme) by decentring ways of working collectively. Five elements that have been key to the GFA’s development were explored, namely notions of listening, humbling, and hosting; and, questions of global time, and translation/translatability. Together we explored our processes to find pathways to be in relation with a network of fashion(ing) communities in order to practice decoloniality beyond content. The workshop engaged with concepts of collaboration that are key to the future of fashion, expand the nexus of decoloniality and fashion, and engage multiple partners and stakeholders across diverse, global fashion(ing) systems.
Watch the full recording on the GFA Youtube channel
GLOBAL FASHIONING ASSEMBLY 2022
On 21-23 October, the first Global Fashioning Assembly (GFA22) took place, hosted by twelve coalitions in fourteen countries, across six continents, for thirty-six hours. The coalitions organised conversations, screenings, visits, workshops and crafts, both online and offline, addressing museum collections, artisan knowledges and heritages, decolonial creative practices and critical research.
DAY 1: 21 OCTOBER 2022
The Fashioning Assembly Aotearoa
The New Zealand Fashion Museum, coordinated by Doris de Pont, presented the Fashioning Assembly Aotearoa, starting off the GFA22 with a ritual blessing and a series of talks, workshops and presentations that explored diverse ways of self-fashioning and communal care for future generation.
explored the search for identity, place of origin and sense of home in Kazakhstan history and culture with interviews, performances and presentations coordinated by Aika Alemi, Nursulu Jaxybai, Akerke Adejan, Vlad Sludskiy & Born Nomad artisans.
The Pakistan Collective for Decolonial Practices
The PCDP hosted an interdisciplinary seminar offering multiple perspectives on the possibilities of and need for decolonising the curriculum, featuring Zeb Bilal, Sonya Battla, Rohma Khan, Kohi Marri, Mehwish Abid and Pakeezah Zaidi.
OYC brought together founder Chepkemboi Mang'ira and cultural change makers and social entrepreneurs Sylvia Omina and Angela Mutethya who shared stories about their work aimed at restoring Kenyan culture and craftsmanship through a digital platform.
AFRI_inConversation: Threads of Thought
The African Fashion Research Institute (AFRI) presented an immersive dialogue between four South African creatives, Erica de Greef, King Debs, Lesiba Mabitsela and Scott Williams, about how they meet as South African creatives, why they do what they do and how they navigating contemporary, decentred praxis and critical pedagogies.
DAY 2: 22 OCTOBER 2022
The Centre for Research of Fashion and Clothing (CIMO)
CIMO, a non-profit organization based in Zagreb that focusses on contextualizing local fashion practices and phenomena in relation to the global fashion system and dominant fashion discourse, presented a re-reading of workwear clothing practices, working class cultures and socialist industrial production histories.
The Research Collective for Decoloniality and Fashion (RCDF) invited The Linen Project (TLP), which was initiated in 2018 to investigate and work towards reactivating the economic viability of small-scale local flax cultivation and linen production in the Netherlands. It seeks to reinstate the economy as a social, ecological and cultural domain and to strengthen socio-economic patterns and behaviours rooted in a commoning approach. The programme included inspiring presentations and testimonies by Joan den Exter (Linen Project Coordinator), Karin Wijnen (independent researcher), Hans Hutting (steward and designer), Carolien Evers (steward and knitwork designer) and Henrike Gootjes (steward and designer). The day will be moderated by Sandra Niessen (textile anthropologist).
Fashion Liberation Collective North Africa
The FLCNA had three local coalitions host the GFA, presenting their take on decolonising design by exploring education as sites to think through collage as decolonial method in Egypt, weaving as embodied knowledges in Morocco, and memes as decolonial cracks in Wales.
DAY 3: 23 OCTOBER 2022
Decoloniality Collective: Crossroads in the Global South
CoMoDe premiered the screening of an artistic adaptation of the academic article ‘The Fashion Crossroad Method’ written by CoMoDe researchers based in Brazil. The screening was followed by a conversation moderated by Mi Midrado.
The North Carolina Museum of Art saw Amanda Maples, Alexus Rhone, Chef Kabui and Shemora Shaikh share practices of communal healing with mindful fashioning, tea-drinking and henna painting.
Ghana International Fashion Team
GIFT presented a critical dialogue with fashion creatives Beatrice "Bee" Arthur, Nuel Bans, Rania Odaymat and Clara Pinkrah - Sam, in a panel discussion weaving together aspects of Ghanaian culture for a decolonized future fashion.
Awamaki closed the GFA programme by offering a journey through weaving and sharing with artisan women in rural Andean communities in Peru, with Mandish Kalsi in dialogue with the Director of Awamaki, Kennedy Leavens.