Thursday, March 29, 2007

I'd forgotten, actually.

So, a year ago I was working on my post-apocalyptic fashion collection, Dystopolis. A friend recently asked about my AIM name, emagatonsi, and it comes from IsNotAGame backwards.

There's a company called Edoc Laundry, which uses hipster t-shirts to disseminate information related to an Alternate Reality Game (article in Wired here).

For more info on Alternate Reality Games, search "I Love Bees," the viral marketing campaign used by Microsoft to market Halo.

These games often utilized web sites as a starting point, but there are also phone conversations with fictional characters, hidden code in web sites, or in the case of Edoc Laundry, in clothing.

The closest I've ever come to ARG's in person is this one time where I went to Charles Village to play Zombie Nerf War, but ultimately left before the game started because I was so stressed about my fashion show line's progress. So much of my life has been reading fanfiction, being anxious about possibilities, living vicariously through strong female characters in books. I think where ARG's really interested me was the creation of a mythology so thoughtful, so pervasive, that the very line between real and make-believe could be changed in a person's mind. And giving a storyline, guidelines, puzzles, clues, structure, that allowed a person to exist in this alternate world, as they exist in their flesh-and-blood day-job body.

Which sort of comes full circle to the existential crisis of the day. The fibers majors of the class of 2008 are the first class that will be able to have fulfilled the full requirements of the Experimental Fashion concentration here at MICA. A year ago, I took Fashion Graphics, which talks about graphics, branding, type, copy, and design as related to garments. It was a graphic design class, so kind of the entire time I felt underwater in terms of working with print/package/label design/graphics programs. Anyway, I did mediocre in the class, my fashion line wasn't expansive, but now I've got to work with the same instructor for the next entire year. The class is called multi-media event, and I'm really hoping it's like Fashion Graphics for fibers majors and fine art. With the requirements of my major and concentration, I have three art history classes and seven and a half studio art classes to finish in the next two semesters. These required classes mean I can't take the classes I'd really love to. My schedule made itself for me.

Basically, while looking over my registration sheet for the next semester, I panicked with the lack of classes I have to take left to me. There are so many classes I'd love to take, hell, I'd kill to take Uniformity (again) with Kristine Woods and Christopher Whittey, mindfuck that that would be. Until talking with the department chair, I didn't know what to do. But, the smiling, silver-haired dutchwoman told me it would be silly not to finish my concentration. And I believe her.

Which goes back to me being Fibers with Experimental Fashion concentration. I realize I don't care that much about fashion. But clothing, dress, design is an expansive and powerful vocabulary with which a fine artist can comment on the world they live in and their place in it, their role as artists. My work's now taken a less apocalyptic, more domestic turn, obsessive about strength of making food as opposed to strength in crisis. It will be interesting to see how my work develops over the next semester to become my final proposal. And, right now I'm not sure what that proposal will look like.

Everything always comes full-circle, no?


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