WORKING AT THE CARWASH: Being the chair of Pratt’s Fashion Department hasn’t deterred Jennifer Minniti from creating her own artistically infused clothing.
Through a collaboration with the artist Beverly Semmes, the designer draws from Semmes’ Feminist Responsibility Project. In conjunction with Semmes’ “Bow” exhibition at the Susan Inglett Gallery, the “Carwash Collective” label will debut October 14. They joined forces to establish what is described as a new politic of clothing.
For the Feminist Responsibility Project, Semmes made works on paper that used pages torn from a censored porn magazine as a starting point. Using fabric digitally printed with these altered images, Minniti used engineered cuts and construction combined with Semmes’ rawmark marking. The idea is that they take control of the image, first as a drawing and then as clothing, to relay a feeling of “take back the image.”
Minniti said she first became “enamored” with Semmes’ work as a graduate student at New York University in the Nineties and has been “a huge fan since then.” After landing the chairperson of Fashion Department Fashion Design at Pratt, she learned that Semmes was a professor in the school’s sculpture department. “A mutual colleague introduced us and we connected right away. It’s been a great collaboration for a few years now,” Minniti said.
The Carwash Collective will debut its 11 ensembles at Saturday night’s opening party in the West Chelsea gallery. Those pieces will be available for sale the evening of the show. Additional ones will be available directly from CarWash and some exclusives will be available at the Lydia Rodrigues Salon. The limited-edition pieces will cost from $375 up to $3,000 for the rare pieces.
In the meantime, Semmes’ show at the Susan Inglett Gallery will remain on view through October 21 and her work is also up in the Stern Windows Project at New York University.