“I realized as I was making my first piece, that many of these pieces come from places that are in either diplomatic or physical conflict right now. When I google Afghanistan, the Kuchi, Pakistan, Egypt, China I get hundreds of articles on wars and diplomatic conflicts. I see lots of faces of men in suits, BUT working with textiles from these areas reminds me of the rich, ornate beauty that is made at the hands of the poorest women in these countries. It is a reminder that there is so much more to the story… and there always has been.”
I (respectfully) de-construct some of the intricate chain and link work that these women have designed, and I rework it. I combine textile elements that may be from 3,000 miles and 100 years apart. It is fascinating to see how some of the design elements fit together so beautifully. Its stunning, I think.
The de-construction feels like archeology in a way, and I feel closer to the women who fabricated these intricate Kuchi pendants, or Pakistani ornamented coins and chokers. These women take bits and bobbles-basically TRASH and turn it into gorgeous adornment that is constructed w/ genius design. These women are brilliant and if they had the resources that the “men in suits” have, the world would not be starving… and architecture would be a lot hotter.
So, in order to help make that happen 5% of profits from all Beyond Conflict will go to Eve \
Enslers V Day Foundation. V Day Foundation is active- in the dirt, empowering regional leaders who work to protect the rights and resources of girls and women.
Check out this Ted Talk w/ Eve Ensler where she talks about starting VDay and her experiences traveling to Kenya and Afghanistan and meeting w/ local women leaders.
Beyond Konflict is available at:
Olivia’s performances at festivals