California Cloth Foundry’s Aviva Knox's installation, "Authentic Apparel", at the Reimagining Progress exhibit at the David Brower Center in Berkeley is up until September 4th. Her project conveys the idea that for apparel to be authentic the manufacturing process must be transparent.
She researched the manufacturing process of three brands that have different relationships with the consumer; Hanesbrands, Zara, and American Apparel. To show what a transparent manufacturing process would look like to the consumer she rewrote the t-shirts tags. If a company would not disclose information about their process, such as where they sourced their cotton from, the tags would educate the consumer on the current international cotton farming situation and some of the struggles attributed to it. If a one of the t-shirts used devices such as forced labor, child labor, environmental degredation, or labor abuse an icon Aviva designed would be added to the tag with an educational explanation to the consumer.
The transparency of the tags educate the consumer to not only know where and how their shirts were made, but the effects these shirts had on the people maklng them. The tags hope to convey a story to the consumer so they start to understand the complicated system that makes most of our clothing and their role as the buyer in that system.
Get more information about the exhibit at the David Brower Center.