This evening at 6:30 San Francisco mixed-media artist Stephanie Syjuco (her work is part of the permanent collections of both the SF MOMA and the Whitney) is giving a free lecture at the Museum of Contemporary Craft in advance of a two-day workshop she is also teaching next week. It's part of the museum's Fashioning Cascadia exhibit (up now through early October), which has not only condensed a ton of information on the region's apparel industry, but has created some really valuable opportunities to connect with artists and academics from outside the immediate community whose work engages with the world of fashion on fascinating conceptual levels beyond discussion of aesthetics and economic models. It's the kind of programming MoCC specializes in, wherein raising questions is prioritized over presenting explanation, and having that kind of attention turned on the apparel world doesn't happen too often in Portland.
So, what I am trying to say is: I am super excited to see how Suyjuco is going to tie in WWI-era dazzle camouflage (striped battleships; you've seen 'em) with modern surveillance technology and modern approaches to fashion. And if you are too, you should probably key into this and the other events MoCC has on the docket. There aren't many museum institutions in Portland that have the resources to bring in programming like this, and the next time something apparel-related cycles through their doors could well be a while.
- Stephanie Syjuco