Orange’s latest fashion exhibition had designers learning how to code, solder and strip wires.
Not what you’d normally expect, right?
Fashtech isn’t what you’d normally expect from a fashion exhibition.
The garments on show have wires and lights sewn in, and are all designed by indigenous women and female students from high schools in and around Orange.
The youth arts festival event is a three way collaboration between Sydney based fashion and artistic curators sARTorial, part of Dlux Media, Community Connect Central West and Colour City Creatives.
SARTorial has run showcases and events for students in Sydney, and this is its first foray into country arts.
SARTorial reached out to Community Connect to make the festival happen, and director Vince Loveccio put them in contact with Designing Futures, who held three workshops held for 30 students at Orange High School and Canobolas Rural Technology High School.
Other students from other schools joined in separate community workshops, which also saw members of Orange’s indigenous community – some up to 60-years old –also learning how to code.
SARTorial creative director Tara Morelos said she was “beside herself” seeing the outcomes.
“It’s a fabulous way to engage young women with technology and STEM learning… [instructors] couldn’t tear them away from the coding lessons,” she said.
Exhibition curator Jola Nejman said the clothing was “fantastic”.
“Every piece has lights, every piece looks stunning… just imagine all the garments coming alive.”
Opening night is Friday night, which will feature 10 of the artists wearing their light-up garments.
Technical director Phil Salmon said the experience had helped let the girls in to a world largely dominated by men.
“These are 14 to 17-year-old girls have been doing… what has been considered a male field for a long time,” he said.
“They’ve loved [coding] because there’s been a physical outcome in front of them.”
The exhibition will then run for six weeks at Orange Regional Galley, and the opening is from 6pm-8pm.