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Building & Body: An Architecture x Fashion Collaboration

What happens when the creative minds in architecture and fashion team up? At Singapore’s Archifest 2013, an exhibition entitled “Building & Body” displays the results of such a unique collaboration.

Building & Body: An Architecture x Fashion Collaboration


October 8th, 2013

Returning this year with the theme “Small is Beautiful”, the 17-day-long Archifest – which ends on 13 October – has so far offered a rich programme of Architecture-related talks, workshops, activities and exhibitions in and around the city for both the creative community and public to enjoy.

One recent programme – a fringe exhibition entitled “Building & Body: An Architecture x Fashion Collaboration” – poses a rather intriguing question: What lies between clothing and building, at the interface of fashion and architecture?

In this exhibition curated by Lekker Design, architects and fashion designers come together to explore their common interests in materials, joints, colours, and volumes.


Project: Plystudio x Max Tan

PLYSTUDIO (architect) and Max Tan (fashion designer)

Max Tan and Plystudio’s collaboration evolved from responding directly to the given 1 x 1 x 2m framework, thus engaging architecture in its ‘smallest’ sense and fashion in its ‘largest’ sense.

The habitable garment starts off as a wearable piece, which can be expanded to be a personal shelter when needed. It works itself within different scenarios, and as a potential prototype for the future, it can be flat packed and made deployable.


Project: Plystudio x Max Tan


Project: WY-TO x Pauline Ning

WY-TO (architect) and Pauline Lim (fashion designer)

This project, entitled “INSIDE/OUT”, aims to diminish the boundaries between two disciplines. Can fashion be architecture, and can architecture be fashion? The collaborative journey of WY-TO and Pauline Ning explores the fundamental element of both practices: architecture’s structure and fashion’s purpose to cover our skin. The question is only answered by another question to investigate a new level of understanding.

“Can bodies wear fashion structure that when unfolded become our architectural skin?”


Project: Talenia Phua Gajardo x and Michelle Chan

Talenia Phua Gajardo (architect) and Michelle Chan (fashion designer)

Taking its cue from the festival’s theme “Small is Beautiful”, “Everyday Spectacle” explores the possibilities of an inconspicuous, commonplace object – the wooden clothes peg – to investigate parallel design strategies shared between the fields of architecture and fashion.

Purposefully avoiding the use of traditional materials, the modular peg serves as a neutral ‘building block’ that is arranged in repetition and hand-woven together with wire and nylon to form a malleable wooden tapestry. This hybrid of fabric and solid surface responds to controlled manipulation in order to achieve a final desired form. With its sinuous gesture, the suspended piece conceals the inherent rigidity of the wood as it floats amidst a one-way mirrored glass box. By illuminating the installation from within the enclosure, the imperfect perforations and gaps scattered across the form indirectly cast spontaneous shadows within an otherwise manicured environment.


Project: Talenia Phua Gajardo x and Michelle Chan

The exhibition is on until 13 October at The Cathay, 2 Handy Road #04-21

Archifest 2013

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