Amanda Crisolago’s lunch break last Monday included fringed frocks, beaded bodices, and sequined stilettos.
She wasn’t dining at the Gatsby mansion but popping into the opening day of the 100 Years of Fashion exhibition at Humber’s L Space Gallery at the Lakeshore campus, a place the first-year graphic design student says is a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the college’s common spaces.
“It beats the busy cafeteria. I get to ‘culture’ myself instead,” said Crisolago, 26.
L Space is home to the fashion retrospective of vintage clothing curated by a committee of students from Humber’s Fashion Institute for the first time in its three-year run.
Humber’s gallery and collection curator Tara Mazurk said the group decided to move into the gallery this year to take advantage of its space and traffic.
“It’s an area where students can gather and it’s a nice bright, openly lit space, so that there is more room to play around with displays and different levels of visual merchandising,” said Mazurk.
Unlike most gallery installations, visitors don’t have to just look and not touch.
“We set up a dress-up station as well so our visitors can have a little fun with authentic vintage fashion,” said Mazurk.
Coordinator of the Fashion Management and Promotions post-grad certificate program Susan Roberton says the exhibit is an ideal way for students focusing on the business side of fashion to get their hands dirty in a creative way.
“The students do most of the dressing and they learn a lot about the hands-on. In the fashion industry, obviously visuals are a huge part of this field, store planning, visual merchandising, and windows…so this is all part of the skillset that you need. It’s probably the more creative part of what we do,” said Roberton.
“There’s a creative bone in everyone’s body and we just try to tap into it,” said Mazurk.
Committees of post-grad students from diverse education backgrounds work with faculty advisor Wayne McLennan and private vintage collector Robert Wayne to curate the exhibit.
Roberton says the post-grad certificate is the ideal opportunity for students to layer fashion knowledge on top of the expertise they already have from undergrad educations which range across many disciplines.
“Because they’re diverse as they come in, they’re diverse as they go out,” said Roberton.
As for the future of gallery exhibitions at Humber, culture-hungry North campus students need starve no longer. Mazurk confirms that the new Learning Resource Commons building will have a gallery of its very own come September 2015.
“It’s going to be nice and open concept and it’s really going to give programs and departments at the North campus an opportunity to put on an exhibition and showcase what our students do,” said Mazurk.