The fashion world is no stranger to political protest. Many designers have used the platforms they have built through their art as a voice for their cause and Brooklyn based designer Denton Campbell’s “PLG.ITL” is no different.
Campbell’s latest collection pushes change through fashion.
Featuring a new season of pieces highlighting the hate spewed from the White House, PLG.ITL aims to raise awareness about the current cultural and political climate through its unique take on fashion.
“Fuck 45 is about survival. Its about survival as an immigrant. This resonates with me because I too am an immigrantbut Its about survival as any of the oppressed groups in America.”
It doesn’t take the most politically informed person to be aware of the current cultural climate. America is more divided than it has ever been. Between the police shootings of unarmed black men and the rise of white supremacy groups seemingly emboldened by the 45th president, it is easy to see how the countries citizens have been divided.
The Devil is in the details.
Launching a visual campaign to push the message behind “Fuck 45” Denton Campbell founder of the PLG.ITL doesn’t want us to forget about the oppressed and often silenced in America. “Fuck 45 is about survival.” said Campbell. “Its about survival as a minority group. I try not to think about it because when you think about it it will just throw you off. You want to be here you want to live and enjoy your human existence”. Staying true to his mission to speak for the voiceless through bold imagery, Campbell hopes that his pieces will trigger others to pay attention to the ills of this administration that affect us daily.
“if we all feel the same way about something and we have something to connect us, we can mobilize in a way.”
Mobilizing groups of people through art is common. It has been done since the era of political propaganda posters and probably even before that. In light of recent events such as the pushback against DACA reform, mobilizing people through fashion was Campbell’s motivation behind the “Fuck 45” collection this year.
Making political statements through artistic expression.
When asked why Campbell chose fashion as the means to mobilize people Campbell calmly replied “I chose fashion as the medium because fashion is about expression. You can express how you feel through the pieces without saying much”. This translates into the design of the pieces which features imagery of bad press from The Daily News on Trump and the most promininent which is the Nazi swatstika being crossed out. The imagery is easy to relate too if you are against the policies and ideology of this current administration. From the #MeToo movement to DACA, Fuck 45 represents you.
What’s to come.
The ideas behind the “Fuck 45” visual campaign aims to be subtle in its delivery. It is hard to believe that a campaign revolving around such a strong statement could be subtle but Campbell has found a way. Using scenes depicting the average day of individuals belonging to the many disenfranchised groups in America complete with sound bites of Trump’s infamous moments like his “shithole country” comment. Campbell views this as a more efficient way to protest.
“Its going to spread because of like minded people. If we all feel the same way about something and we have something to connect us, we can mobilize.”
The Silent Protest.
It’s obvious that we are in uncharted territory as far as human development is concerned. We have access to new technology with new ways to connect with people. Protests these days seem to start on social media and end on the street. Realizing this Campbell wanted to incorporate how we interact with social media to his marketing scheme. He wants people to express their discontent with the current administration by wearing the pieces which in Campbell’s eyes is vocal enough. “Its a different generation on social media” said Campbell “That shit is effective ! All we need is social media because we know this product is going to tickle a few feathers when people see it. It may get me in trouble but its worth getting the message across to such a broad user base. Its going to spread because the message connects to the hearts and minds of the youth !”
In a perfect world
In a perfect world we wouldn’t have to protest. The voices of the public would be heard. The views of the public would be weighted towards the current administrations policies but that is far from the case. People must find their own ways to resist and protest the tyranny of oppression in all forms. Thanks to Campbell and Plg.ITL we have a new medium to voice our views.
“The emotion behind the feeling of bringing people together against an oppressive force is the unifying factor. Your feelings can be the same as the next person and its what connects people to a social cause. Sometimes we all feel the same type of pain.”