Eco Chic—Towards Sustainable Swedish Fashion opened at Scandinavia House: The Nordic Center in America, May 5, 2010 and showcases Swedish fashion designers who take an environmentally-friendly and ethical approach to their work, without sacrificing style. On view through August 21, 2010 this exhibition illuminates high-fashion alternatives to much of today’s environmentally harmful clothing.
Proving that “going green” is more than a feel-good fad, Swedish designers collaborated to establish a culture of sustainable fashion. The fashion industry faces major challenges in both resources and labor, but designers featured in the Eco Chic exhibition strive to change the general attitude of fashion and consumption. They believe that sustainable development is not simply an empty phrase, and fashion is not just about appearance. This touring exhibition from the Swedish Institute (SI), which premiered in Belgrade in the winter of 2008, has visited major international cities including Minsk, Kiev, Riga, Istanbul, and most recently Berlin. The installation at Scandinavia House in New York marked the first American stop on this tour.
Sustainable clothing has typically been distinguishable by its appearance. Now, as Eco Chic illustrates, ethical fashion looks no different from conventionally produced clothing; it can be exciting and it is possible to construct high fashion garments with sustainable and ecological practices. What sets this kind of fashion apart is implicit in the values and attitudes of individual designers. The ecological and ethical production of clothing begins with the design of a garment, and continues right through to the finished product, including the transparency of fashion companies about their production processes and materials.
Eco Chic designers aspire to create a culture of principled design and production. Through this touring exhibition, they hope to inform consumers that fashion can be simultaneously stylish and sustainable. Eco Chic—Towards Sustainable Swedish Fashion presents garments and footwear by various Swedish fashion designers. Designers featured in this exhibition include: Anja Hynynen, Bergman’s, Camilla Norrback, Dem Collective, Johanna Hofring, Julian Red, Nudie, Pia Anjou, Reflective Circle, Righteous Fashion, Swedish Hasbeens, and Zion.
This exhibition is commissioned and produced by The Swedish Institute. The curator and exhibition architect is Karin Gräns.