An exhibition of prints, textiles and poetic documentary, titled “Garment Girl”, by Los Angeles-based artist Jennifer Vanderpool will be opened at Heritage Space in Hanoi on May 20.
Vanderpool, in collaboration with Hanoi-based artist and fashion designer Hong Pham, will introduce the process of installing artwork in the gallery space: a multifaceted combination of costumes, wall paintings and photographs.
Visitors will be able to observe the entire job of installing an exhibition and directly interact with the artists. They will also have the opportunity to take part in some processes.
The idea of “Garment Girl” comes from “Worker”, an exhibition that Vanderpool created while she was the artist-in-residence at Claremont University, Pitzer College between 2010 and 2011.
The source materials for “Worker” began with Vanderpool’s immigrant working-class family’s story. It was based on her grandmother’s reminiscences about working as a cook in a sweatshop in the Alleghany Mountains and her mother’s stories sewing shirt collars in order to pay her college tuition. The exhibition interlaced the artist’s matrilineal family stories of struggle with the work of unseen laborers toiling in sweatshops in downtown Los Angeles.
Developed from “Worker” as a foundation, “Garment Girl” exhibition at Heritage Space reflects the transnational narrative between the garment industry in Los Angeles and Vietnam, raising questions about the global textile industry as its subject.
The first component of the multifaceted exhibition will include a large-scale three-panel mural. Each panel will be an archival digital print consisting of imagery evoking questions about workers and the apparel and textile industry.
The second component will include poetic documentary videos shown as two projections. The videos will include interviews with Vietnamese refugees who worked in Los Angeles garment sweatshops that the artist met while creating “Worker” as well as conversations with apparel industry scholars, activists and workers.
The third component of the exhibition will include textiles that Vanderpool is designing, which will be displayed as material objects as well as garments.
An unusual fashion show, with models displaying new garments from the “remade workshop” of Vanderpool and Hong Pham in the previous week, will be held on the opening day of the exhibition on May 20.
The exhibition will be opened to visitors until May 30 at Heritage Space on the first floor of Dolphin Plaza Building, Nam Tu Liem District.
Jennifer Vanderpool is a Los Angeles-based new genre artist who works across mediums to reveal relationships between physical landscapes and the unseen forces that shape them, knitting together narratives about forgotten institutions, people and communities.
She has been awarded exhibition funding from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, the National Endowment for the Arts Challenge America, and several other organizations.