621 Gallery Presents:
WASHED AND WORN by Margaret Hull
Hull has an M.F.A. in Fiber from Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan and a B.F.A. in Fiber from Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Maryland. She has been awarded residencies at the Alfred and Trafford Klots International Program for Artists in Léhon, France, AZ West in Joshua Tree, California, Ox-Bow School of Art in Saugatuck, Michigan, and Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, Vermont. Her work has been exhibited at the New Orleans Museum of Art, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, and Cranbrook Art Museum, among other sites. She maintains a studio in Hamtramck, Michigan and is Assistant Professor and Area Coordinator in Fashion Design and Merchandising at Wayne State University.
Through material, technical, and conceptual exploration of garment construction, my practice-based research aligns with de-colonial fashion discourse by critiquing a Eurocentric model of fashion production, value, and display that predominates the industry and education. Siting the output of my research in fine arts spaces, I initiate public dialogue on everyday dress in an effort to facilitate critical response to systemic biases related to gender affecting people who design, sew, promote, buy, and wear clothes. I sew garments using secondhand fabric sourced on Ebay, Facebook Marketplace, and Arts and Scraps, an arts reuse shop in Detroit. Sourcing locally and secondhand is a priority in my work because it supports the local economy and contributes to understanding of place and people through material, in addition to lessening the environmental impact of the fashion and textile industries.
My current body of work, Cottagecorps, references not only the commercialization of internet aesthetics but also the ease and speed at which trends spread in digital spaces. Cottagecorps includes garments, photographic documentation, and installations, and a virtual reality (VR) room. The garments in this series are button down blouses made of a variety of cotton, floral chintz fabrics. Through this floral printed fabric and the patchwork environment in which I locate the garments, I address the role of this textile both in European colonization in the late 17th century and the current cottage-core aesthetic, which embraces and fetishizes the handmade and homegrown in dress and lifestyle. Floral chintz trends every few years in interiors and apparel fabrics, cementing its persistent relevance. I use this vibrant yet delicate pattern as a strategy of attraction while subverting its historic points of reference to collapse past and present.
The exhibition title, Washed and Worn, references the history of chintz and the dilution from its country of origin, India, to European nations including England and France. The title also references the clothing aesthetic characterized by faded or aged prints or other deterioration after repeated us
For more information on the artist’s work, please visit their website: margarethull.com