Prof Wessie Ling
The increasing complexity of the material and symbolic flows of fashion, textile, artefact and commodity is the concern of this studio. Material culture is taken as a site for multiple layers of world encounters that lead to intriguing cultural dynamics. Consider it for the examination of commodity-making in the twenty-first century, an interconnecting force typified by multiple encounters of world cultures and the transcultural, its capacity to interconnect the world; circulate people, goods and ideas; and map out multiple cultures and identities. That material culture brings out multi-layered encounters between the subject and its outside world often goes beyond the dichotomy of Orientalism and Occidentalism. The outcomes are necessarily transcultural and essentially hybrid, offering distinctive stimuli for re-imagination; and they are often underscored by co-creation.
By exploring the processes and the effects of transculturality and co-creation on the transforming identities of people, good, ideas and culture, this studio offers an understanding of the dynamics behind the multiple encounters and the uncanny enchantment (or disenchantment, perhaps) with fashion, textile, artefact and commodity. It sheds light on the multiple connections, comparisons and circulations of people, goods and ideas through a global, interconnected method of inquiry. It addresses the discourses and the processual dynamics of the historical, cultural and political-economic encounter across cultures that underpin the production of goods. Economic, political and socio-cultural intervention, to and from one locality to another, instigate the fascination with and offer distinctive stimuli for cultural re-imagination.
Consider (an) example(s) that address(es)/operate(s) within, but not exclusive to, one or more of the following:
- Cultural globalisation
- Global histories
- Transcultural artefact/commodity
- Global fashion/textile
- Cross-cultural appropriation
- Transnational/transcultural identities
- Transnational production
- Cross-cultural exchanges
- Adamson, Glenn, Giorgio Riello and Sarah Teasley, ed. Global Design History. London: Routledge, 2011.
- Appadurai, Arjun. Modernity at Large: Cultural Dimensions of Globalization. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1996.
- Bauman, Z., ‘On Glocalization; Or Globalization for Some, Localization for Some Others’, Thesis Eleven, no. 54, August 1998, pp. 37-49.
- Bhabha, Homi. The Location of Culture. London: Routledge, 1993.
- Eicher, Joanne and Sandra Lee Evenson. The Visible Self: Global Perspectives on Dress, Culture and Society. New York: Fairchild Publications, 2008.
- Eisenstadt, N. Shumel, ed. Multiple Modernities. Transaction Publishers, 2002.
- Fowler, G, Jie, and Les Carlson. “The Visual Presentation of Beauty in Transnational Fashion Magazine Advertisements.” Journal of Current Issues and Research in Advertising, vol. 36, no.2, 2015, pp. 130–56.
- Friedman, James. Cultural Identity & Global Process, London: Sage, 1994.
- Ling, Wessie. ‘Bag of Remembrance: A Cultural Biography of Red-White-Blue, from Hong Kong to Louis Vuitton’, in Reggie Blaszczyk and Veronique Pouillard (eds.), European Fashion: The Creation of a Global Industry, Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2018, pp. 283-301.
- Ling, Wessie, Lorusso, Mariella and Segre Reinach, Simona. Critical Studies in Global Fashion', Zone Moda Journal, vol. 9, issue 2, 2019, pp. V-XVI.
- Ling, Wessie. and Segre Reinach, Simona. (2019) ‘Co-Creation and Transculturaion in Fashion-Making: Sino-Italian Fashion as Method’, Modern Italy, vol 24, issue 4, pp. 401-415.
- Maynard, Margaret. Dress and Globalization. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2004.
- Miller, Daniel, Material Culture and Mass Consumption, Wiley, 1997.
- Niessen, Sandra, Annemarie Leshkowich and Carla Jones, eds. Re-Orienting Fashion: The Globalization of Asian Dress. Oxford: Berg, 2003.
- Peirson-Smith, Ann and H. Joseph Hancock, eds. Tranglobal Fashion Narratives: Clothing Communication, Style Statements and Brand Storytelling. Bristol: Intellect, 2018.
- Pomeranz, Kenneth. The Great Divergence. China, Europe and the Making of the Modern World Economy. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2000.
- Riello, Giorgio. “Asian Knowledge and the Development of Calico Printing in Europe in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries.” Journal of Global History, vol. 5, no. 1, March 2019, pp. 1–28.
- Robertson, Roland. ‘Glocalization: Time-Space and Homogeneity-Heterogeneity’ in Featherstone, M., Lash, S. and Robertson, R. (eds.) Global Modernities, London: Sage, 1995, pp. 25-44.
- Said, Edward. Orientalism: Western Representations of the Orient. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1978.
- Scafidi, Susan. Who Owns Culture? Appropriation and Authenticity in American Law. Piscataway, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2005.
- Tirthankar, Roy and Giorgio Riello. Global Economic History. London: Bloomsbury, 2019.
- Tu, Thuy Linh Nguyen. The Beautiful Generation: Asian Americans and the Cultural Economy of Fashion. Durham: Duke University Press, 2011.
Studio image: Wessie Ling, Labels of Desire, 2015. Banner: Hans Op de Beeck, Staging Silence (3), video still (detail), 2019
Dissertation Studios 2020–21
Studio 01: Another Place
Out of a direct treatment of place, whether subjective or objective, emerges another place. It is neither new, nor fixed in time, but it has remained unexplored, scarcely documented – piles of lime and useless cicadas.
Studio 02: Feminist Approaches
The Dissertation Studio 02 seminar series will address feminist practices within architecture, history and activism.
Studio 03: Narrative and Storytelling
This studio focuses on modes of storytelling and narrative conventions. We will particularly consider how narrative intersects with, and informs, identity.
Studio 04: The Conquest of Joy
This studio encourages dialogues around the cultural production at a time when narratives founded on certainty have ceased to make sense.
Studio 05: This is my truth; show me yours: Post-truth, propaganda and bulls**t
This studio will look at the emergence of the notion of "post truth" and explore links between other ideas around propaganda and Harry Frankfurt’s argument about "bulls**t". We will consider the usefulness of these ideas, and how they can be explored in creative practice.
Studio 06: The Practice of Space – Writing Atmospheres in Art and Architecture
Nico de Oliveira
Dissertation Studio 06 looks at space as practice, since each location is a mutable entity framed as a moment in time, populated by individuals and shaped by their actions as artists, musicians, curators, designers, architects, writers and spectators.
Studio 07: Meaningful Work
This studio will consider the value of making in itself, independent of the product or outcome, exploring the idea of craft as meaningful work.
Studio 08: Speak, Form.
Dissertation Studio 8 asks: How is it that form might speak? This studio looks at the power of rhetoric, of the medium as message, of the figure as discourse.
Studio 09: Thinking with Ruins
This studio pays heed to these cultural forms and persuasions but asks, how might we productively think with ruins in the present?
Studio 10: Sport and Aesthetics
Dissertation Studio 10 will examine the concept of aesthetics as applied within that most everyday activity: sport.
Studio 11: Le Marteau Sans Maître (The Hammer without a Master)
In a networked world where knowledge and information seems to be accessible everywhere and in any form; and where people in distant places appear to speak to us in real time from our computer screens, Studio 11 tries to imagine an ‘immediate’ and performative experience of the world – outside language and not shaped by our intellect and will.
Studio 12: Material Culture and Transcultural Exchanges
Dissertation Studio 12 is concerned with the increasing complexity of the material and symbolic flows of fashion, textile, artefact and commodity.
Studio 13: B(read)
Focussing on two of life’s key ingredients, reading and bread, this Dissertation Studio offers sessions that will encourage you to experience and experiment with both.
Studio 14: Rewilding
In this Dissertation Studio, we will examine some of the many ways in which art, architecture, and design connect to the discourse on rewilding.
Studio 15: “If I stay silent nothing will change”: Identity, Politics, Social Change and Creative Culture(s)
This cross-disciplinary studio considers how power, culture, politics, identity, representation, activism, social media, and mass culture theory intersect with a range of arts practices, including photography, architecture, design and fine art, film studies, fashion and music, sound, pop art, and theatre.
Studio 16: A Material World
This Dissertation Studio will be based on the processes that are intrinsic to the design and making of textiles, however it will also be looking at the materiality of these textiles as objects.
Studio 17: Souvenir
This studio is concerned with those objects that are lent a particular enchantment because of their relationship with the past. It considers the role of memory and how it is embodied in cultural artefacts.
Studio 18: Modes of Human Exchange (Being-with and without)
This studio considers the current (exceptional) conditions of human exchange in a broader historical/social context, highlighting how facial/bodily gestures and the decorum of their physical/ambient surroundings have provided essential clues to the way we respond to, and interact with, the ‘other’.