a piece of rock within an igneous mass which is not derived from the original magma but has been introduced from elsewhere, especially the surrounding country rock.
Xenolith is an expressive and conceptual design company which seeks to disengage from the capitalist driven spectacle and motives of the fashion industry, whilst still operating within its framework to serve an intellectual consumer who’s needs simply are not fulfilled with the existing futile fashion system. Xenolith’s core purpose is to educate and inform through the creation and exhibit of fashion as art.
Xenolith began in 2017 as a sustainable fashion brand which proposed a challenge to oniomania in an attempt to bring psychology into play to positively change the unhealthy behaviours which are leading the fashion industry into becoming a toxic environment to both work and consume, not just environmentally but also psychologically.
The brand operates within an industry which its vales are almost unaligned. It aims to create a new set of values which emphasise the importance and value in an artistic integrity within design combining an authentic multimedia approach across fashion, art and psychology.
During the anxious age, where there is an increasing lack of trust in authority and in the media, consumers search for brand integrity and brands they can truly identify their value set with. Xenolith builds a rebellious, dystopian personality in its consumer group through its rejection to current fashion trends to provoke thought from the compulsion of conflicts that the industry’s pressures inflict upon both consumers and employees.
Although operating within the fashion industry, the brand takes an anti-fashion approach to design. As a conclusion of in-depth industry experience and the critical evaluation of large fashion brands’ regurgitation culture, Xenolith aims to create a new system for design which looks at reinvigorating the artistic expression and conceptual value to fashion design.
The brands core value is craftsmanship, and the anxieties woven into each piece make them each complex works of art which reflect the therapeutic expression and escapist aguish of the designers’ relationship with fashion and art.
The brand explores its approach to craft in a sophisticated response to the conflicts between mental, physical, emotional and spiritual fragments of identity as now more than ever, consumers face conflict between their digital and physical presence. Explored in a visual and tactile approach to design, to integrate elements of this complex relationship into unique hand-crafted textiles which communicate the anxieties and concealed nature of the contrasting levels to a woman’s personality.
Xenolith communicates to a niche audience who fully identify and connect with the concepts explored in the works. This audience find complete freedom and expression within the collections. They are innovative, courageous leaders who seek creative forms of self-expression which allow them to escape the unsavoury realities of our times and be a part of underrepresented intellects producing a new system and social order which is more aligned with their desires and wishes. Their key motivations are craftsmanship and process and their artistic eye for detail results in their appreciation of complex and emotional design. The audience are the Xenolith’s confined within a culture that is servant to consumerism.
The brands criteria for success is not measured in profits or sales, but rather the engagement from its audience in a live, performative exhibition space. We seek to move and inspire rather than to promote and market illogical and unreasoned purposes to consume.
“It is through women’s experience in society that an understanding of their psychology must be sought; not, as it is usually taught, the other way around, whereby women’s social roles are seen to flow naturally from women’s psychology, a psychology in-variably seen as determined by biology. The feminist analysis of women’s psychology shows the enormous extent to which their actions and feelings have been concentrated on trying to cope with society’s rules about what and who women should be. The development of a new understanding of women’s experiences and women’s psychology rests on bringing into bold relief exactly what these rules are." (Orbach, 1983) The research underpinning the collection is to explore the realities of women’s conflict with themselves both from a psychological and medical perspective but also understanding how the fashion industry plays such a critical role, from a young age in this sometimes-dangerous conflict with oneself. As we grow in an age of increasingly fast-paced collection releases, social media pressures and advertising and media at our constant consumption, we are losing our sense of physical self. Designers are failing to keep up which is evident in the increase of designer suicide, resignation and lack of innovation with constant recycling of silhouettes which prove commercially successful. Collections no longer have an emotional, shock value because of their inventible turnover. Therefore, consumers have no escape into a fantasy where they can fully express their true, multi-layered personalities and connect fully with a designer. The collection allows women to understand the interior and exterior conflict of self-identity. I am going to explore the complex but poorly understood relationship between a women’s mental, physical, emotional and spiritual self and how each of these fragments form a complicated and inter-changing representation of femininity through how women express control through dress. The audience is not defined by set values, demographics and beliefs as I do not pinpoint the target consumer based on commercial benefits and I aim to give that control to the audience. Rather my consumer is open to interpret the brand as they wish as a result of their subjective desires and experiences. The audience are a group of like-minded creatives who seek a connection to brands and brand identity. However, as the question of identity is contradictory the ways the audience respond and connect to that is diverse.