Diversity NOW! Why Fashion needs to 'Mix it Up' Caryn Franklin MBE

This lecture asks future creatives to consider the impact of their work on the self-esteem of today's audience.

Date: 22 February 2014

This lecture asks future creatives to consider the impact of their work on the self-esteem of today's audience. With its subtext around unachievable body-ideals and over sexualised femininity, could fashion deliver a more emotionally enlightened message?

The lecture is hard hitting and political, covering Christianity, Pornography, Dismorphic behaviour and much more.

Fashion is an amazing medium and vehicle for creatives who currently work within a dynamic that appropriates inherent desire to dress up and celebrate who we are, selling it back to us on a seasonal basis with unspoken rules. 

Before we become fashion practitioners we are consumers absorbing aspirational ideals about the body that normalises the unachievable and is facilitated by the proliferation of digital fashion messaging. Has this warped our view before we start? 

How we access our own voice and instinctive artistic source. 

As conscious fashion practitioners at the beginning of our practice can we ask ourselves:

  • Do we think the current proliferation of fashion imagery in service to unachievable body ideals is in anyway to the detriment of the self-esteem of contemporary men and women?
  • Have we been exposed to a destabilising influence without realising?
  • If we name it does it effect how we approach our practice? 
  • Beyond the Catwalk means looking at the END USER to improve our business offer. She is not an immovable bust stand or a professional model.
  • Could we also look at the power of fashion to communicate and broadcast a range of body and beauty ideals and influence self-esteem in a positive way? 
  • Should fashion creatives be accountable for the messaging we create and promote?
  • What constitutes objectification?
  • What have some of the All Walks Beyond the Catwalk initiatives which promote an aspirational and realistic range of bodies achieved so far
  • Why Dr. Ben Barry's research is crucial. 

Diversity NOW! 14 brief and current info here. http://www.allwalks.org/2013/08/diversity-now-2014/

Caryn Franklin Fashion Commentator 

Franklin's projects have involved refugees in battle zones, workers in free-trade-zone slums, mental health experts, MP's and Gov. Ministers as well as the fashion industry’s innovators.  She is has co-chaired Fashion Targets Breast Cancer since the 1995 and co–founded of the award–winning All Walks Beyond the Catwalk in 2009 to challenge fashion industry dependance on unachievable body ideals by promoting diversity and inclusivity. Franklin holds Honorary Doctorate at Kingston University and is an Honorary Fellow at the Arts university College Bournemouth as well as a Visiting Fellow and Ambassador of the Centre of Sustainable Fashion at London College of Fashion. In 2013 Franklin received an MBE.

Image of Caryn Franklin

News details

Venue: Parker Gallery, 41 Commericial Road, London E1 1LA
Date: 28th February 2014
Time: 1pm - 2.30pm