Phlox van Oppen
Internship: Textiel Museum Tilburg
Before I walk you through the process and conceptualization of my work, I want to elaborate on my motivation for the project. My name is Phlox van Oppen and I come from a big family; growing up I used to live with my two sisters and two cousins. I was used to having many girls in my household. However, that didn't compare to the household I would live in during my studies over the last four years, a student house with 36 women. The biggest female student house of the Netherlands. I decided that I wanted to use my living situation and direct surroundings as inspiration for my graduation project.
During my project I started researching the different ecosystems that are at play, materials, and waist we produce as a household on a daily basis. I started looking at trash bins, tablecloths and fluff of the dryer, things that are iconic for my household but had not captured my attention before. These are materials that are generally overlooked or thrown away. I decided that I wanted to give them a new purpose within my project, whilst conveying the message that living in a household with 36 women has some resemblance to the problems we face in our society. I wanted to emphasize the polluting aspects of the clothing industry, since this is also a big issue within my household, receiving multiple clothing packages on a daily basis. With my graduation project I was aiming to make a notion to this issue and focus on creating awareness by taking these materials out of their original context and creating something new. The ecosystem of waste was captured in different textile works, each showing the house in a unique way. The works reveals the colors of the 4 seasons. Taking a closer look, it shows my hectic household though a residue of hair and skin. The works are the harvest of 2021-2022 coming from within my household.