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Inside Bushwick’s Anti-Fashion Week Event

Catherine Chen

It seems fitting to share photos from an Anti-Fashion week show during Fashion Revolution Week. Photographer Abigail Tulenko shot behind-the-scene’s and interviewed designerand KRATER founder Giselle Ramirez.

This series was shot backstage and on the runway at KRATER’S “anti-fashion week” runway show, an immersive event subverting the conventions of NYFW. Though a subway ride away from the
catwalks of fashion week, it felt like its own universe at Bushwick’s House of Yes. In contrast with stilted runway walks, KRATER presented subversive new collections through performance art, dance, and immersive storytelling. Models glided, crawled, pirouetted, shook, and wailed down the runway, while transportive soundscapes flooded the space.
Designer and KRATER’S founder Giselle Ramirez was magical to behold as she whisked together looks, making styling adjustments on the fly, and projecting a warmth that was infectious. I especially enjoyed capturing the love and care that went into the backstage process that alchemized into this wacky and wonderful show.

Interview with Giselle

What does ethical fashion mean to you?
Ethical fashion is about designing and manufacturing clothes in a way that cares for people and
communities while minimizing the impact on the environment. It is about being aware of your
responsibility as a designer and considering human rights, animal welfare, and environmental impact
in your work. I believe that designers can be agents of change and become radical leaders who can
manifest changes that embody universal values of dignity, compassion, and fairness and transform
unworkable systems in order to solve problems.

backstage at KRATER anti-fashion show at the house of YES in brooklyn
Model Quentin Nguyenduy, MUA Jen Kossin

How does sustainability impact your approach to design?
I started working in the industry as a fashion stylist and curator. Through my experience
working with vintage fashion, I was appalled by the amount of clothing that would go to the landfill
when sorting out donations and picking garments. I was often put into a situation where I would
have to decide what to do with enormous amounts of clothes. This experience made me aware of my
agency in solving this problem and how I could be part of the change.

At the same time, I began my art residency in printmaking and fashion and furthered my practice as a designer by reworking vintage clothing.
Today, I specialize in textiles and fabric interventions as my art practice by using clothing as a canvas to convey meaning and emotions.
I am proud to say that I am part of a generation of socially and environmentally conscious designers
that are pushing things forward.

backstage at KRATER anti-fashion show at the house of YES in brooklyn
Model Renanzo Williams

What changes would you like to see in the fashion industry in the future?
Being from an immigrant, working-class background makes being part of this industry impossible.
There must be more initiatives to support up-and-coming designers and have more diversity. I also
believe the industry must change its toxic behaviors toward everybody involved. The
dehumanizing way it pushes designers, models, production workers, photographers and everybody
involved must stop. People shouldn’t die or have mental, emotional, and physical health issues
because the show must go on. Fashion is a collaboration, and everybody should be treated with
respect. I am totally against the elitism and status quo of the industry as we know it and want to
create a platform for emerging designers to show their work and change the narrative. That is why I
created KRATER.

KRATER anti-fashion show at the house of YES in brooklyn
Model Robert Jamie Mason

About Krater

KRATER is an artistic incubator where imagination transcends itself. It is a movement and community space that aims to celebrate the freedom and empowerment of self-expression by unifying design, music, and art. This event provides a platform for emerging designers to push
fashion’s boundaries as an artistic practice and redefine its meaning.
The mainstream fashion industry is built upon exploiting labor and natural resources. This event is about having the power to take action while reimagining a just and equitable fashion
system for the people and the planet. Now is the time to rise together for a regenerative, restorative, and revolutionary new fashion system.

KRATER is a celebration of people that are creating art and fashion in support of a more sustainable and transparent fashion industry, and this is us reclaiming New York Fashion Week by having an ANTI-FASHION event.
The designers debuted new collections and collaborations through a series of disruptive performances challenging the standard runway show.
This event was groundbreaking for our scene by bringing NYFW to Bushwick. This is an event for artists by artists, celebrating the importance of sustainable design and giving a platform to emerging,
independent designers in our scene to show their work and start a conversation.

–Interview + Photos: Abigail Tulenko , Video: Yaseen Hashmi

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