Yayi Chen

Black Sheep


new york / united states


BFA Parsons The New School for Design

Yayi’s artistic inspirations stem from her unique trilingual and multicultural upbringing. She grew up in both Spain and China, and was fortunate to be immersed in the artistic atmosphere of both beautiful and distinct cultures, which heavily ignited her passion towards fine art and fashion design. For the past five years, her cultural experiences enriched further on through her study on fashion design in Parsons the New School for Design, New York campus as well as exchanging to Central Saint Martins in London. Through her stay in New York, she has worked for the renowned fashion houses including The Row and Thom Browne.

The contrast between the representational aspects of traditional eastern philosophy and the conceptual identity within contemporary art has stimulated Yayi’s interest in challenging the traditional interpretation of fashion. Her research and creation often focuses on women’s identity in the society throughout history within multicultural backgrounds.

In her recent collection In Tran · sient, she explored the invisible identity of Chinese immigrant women in Europe in terms of their overlooked and objectified labouring body. Through the collaborative process that Yayi has approached of combining fashion, performance art and film together with a community of artists from the same diasporic background, she aimed to used the collective voice to empower immigrant women by pondering their struggle through her poetic and feminine vision on contemporary fashion.

The project earned Yayi several awards including: the 2019 Parsons Academic Awards of Creative Systmes, the 2019 Parsons X Solstiss Sponsorship Award, the Parsons X Neiman Marcus Hudson Yards Showcase, and CFDA 2019 Fashion Future Graduate Showcase, as well as finalist position for the Pasons X Luxarity Lane Crawford Partnership Award. Yayi was also the awardee of the 2o18 CFDA Scholarship Award and finalist position to the 2019 Liz Claiborne Scholarship Award.

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