11 Jul 2023
18:00 - 20:30
Roundtable: Decolonizing the Gaze - Textile Cultural Heritage vs Colonialism?
Framer Framed will hosts the roundtable discussion; Decolonizing the Gaze – Textile Cultural Heritage vs Colonialism – Cultural Appropriations? based on visual artist Caterina Pecchioli‘s research project, Decolonizing the Gaze: The Colonial Heritage of Italian and International Fashion Design and Its Impact on the Collective Imagination.
Decolonizing the Gaze – Textile Cultural Heritage vs Colonialism – Cultural Appropriations? is an open debate about what different fabrics and their history tell about interculture, colonialism, and cultural appropriations. The discussion, which involves Afro-descendant stylists, artists, and fashion designers with origins from countries with a history of Dutch colonisation, intends to identify new meanings about widespread colonial dressing practices and body policies, and the effects of colonialism on the individual/collective imagination and design practices.
Together with fashion designer and creative director Zinzi de Brouwer and publisher and designer Willem van Zoetendaal, the roundtable will offer insight into the Dutch Wax fabrics and the implications of its designs and messages produced in Holland and sold in Africa – and its complex and controversial identity representation. These fabrics present images and messages that are like archives of meanings that tell of an ambiguous relationship linked to the European colonial period. Fashion designers and creative directors Semhal Tsegaye Abebe, Bubu Ogisi, and Zinzi de Brouwer will also highlight initiatives and design projects that reveal the richness of African textile heritage still little known in Europe today, and their connection with sustainability. Some of the topics brought to the discussion will emerge from a participatory workshop that Caterina Pecchioli will lead previously at CBK Zuidoost Broedplaats Heesterveld and interviews collected on these issues by Caterina Pecchioli and Roxane Mbanga between Amsterdam and Paris.
The Roundtable is organised within the framework of Decolonizing the Gaze – The Colonial Heritage of Italian and International Fashion Design and Its Impact on the Collective Imagination a project by Caterina Pecchioli which proposes a visual and historical analysis of dress items, fabrics, and accessories from the Italian and Dutch colonial period that are preserved in the collections of the Ex Museo Coloniale in Rome and Tropenmuseum in Amsterdam. A participatory study that aims to bring the Italian decolonial perspective within a live European debate on the decolonization of fashion and culture and on the political uses of fashion and clothing. The complex relationship between de-colonialism, heritage, cultural globalization, and “Made in Italy” is tackled through a program of workshops and seminars with the collaboration of institutions engaged on the subject in Italy, Holland, Ethiopia, South Africa, and the USA. In the Netherlands, Caterina Pecchioli is an artist-in-resident at the Thami Mnyele Foundation for the months of June and July 2023 to develop the Dutch stage of the project.
The event is in English.
This project is supported by the Italian Council (11th edition, 2022), Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity within the Italian Ministry of Culture. The programmes are in collaboration with Framer Framed (NL), Thami Mnyele Foundation (NL), Tilburg Textile Museum (NL), CBK Zuidoost NL (NL), Africa & Mediterraneo Magazine – IUAV Venice (IT)
Diaspora / Shared Heritage / Colonial history /