Like no other medium, fashion expresses how we feel about ourselves and the times we live in. For Melbourne Now, on display at The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia, NGV presents the work of eighteen independent Melbourne designers in Fashion Now, a marker of both contemporary life and a snapshot of the changing values and new directions underpinning local recent fashion practice.
Celebrating this display, which features a range of both emerging and established practitioners, for Melbourne Design Week the NGV hosts a conversation with three of the exhibiting designers highlighting the diversity of aesthetics, politics, design philosophies, design methodologies, energy and talent in Melbourne’s fashion community.
Chris Ran Lin employs a combination of machine and hand-knitting techniques to create experimental knitwear.
Tailoring is fundamental to garment cut and construction and most often associated with menswear. Working within these traditions but also with innovation, Blair Archibald re-thinks the gendered languages of utility, suiting and workwear.
The fashion ‘collab’ takes many forms, often manifesting in print form, original textiles, and imagery. Denni Francisco of Ngali collaborates with First Nations artists to transpose artworks onto premium-quality clothing and collectables.
Charlotte Botica, Curatorial Project Officer, Fashion and Textiles, NGV
Chris Ran Lin is an independent menswear designer who specialises in experimental and versatile knitwear. Using premium fibres and fabrics, Lin employs a combination of machine and hand-knitting techniques to create textural and sculptural garments inspired by architecture, structure and materiality. Lin’s designs examine the relevance and practicality of knitwear, and his innovative and functional pieces are worn by a diverse clientele.
Blair Archibald is the New Zealand-born creator of independent menswear label BLAIRARCHIBALD is an independent menswear label. Blair is interested in deconstructing masculinity through experimental tailoring that plays with volume and drapery, drawing from the design languages of utility, workwear and uniforms. Archibald’s conceptual garments are wearable, sustainable and durable, and he is known for repurposing production waste into new textiles.
Denni Francisco is a Wiradjuri fashion entrepreneur and founder of Ngali, a sustainable womenswear label that collaborates with First Nations artists to transpose artworks onto premium-quality clothing and collectables. Ngali translates to ‘we’ or ‘us’ in several Aboriginal languages. The name speaks to the brand’s ethos. Guided by Blak ethics, Ngali strives to create meaningful partnerships, promote understanding and pave the way for other First Nations creatives.