Margaret Hull, “Zero Waste Mothering”

Margaret Hull, "Zero Waste Mothering"
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Date/Time
Date(s) - 06/28/2024
12:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Location
The Sculpture Center

Neighborhood

Website
https://sculpturecenter.org/margaret-hull/

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Informed by knowledge-sharing and the secondhand economies associated with raising children, Zero Waste Mothering is a multimedia project that presents both a technical design challenge in intentional material use and a model for circular fashion practices.

Often in the process of manufacturing clothing, overwhelming amounts of unusable scrap material are generated. To disrupt this common yet unsustainable practice, Hull designed a blouse that would not produce any scrap pieces of fabric in its production. In addition to being a zero waste design, the asymmetrical blouse is also a functional piece of clothing as it offers the wearer modesty while breastfeeding a baby. This feature requires the support of another person to position the garment, a performative gesture that serves as a metaphor for the community of care Hull has experienced in parenthood.

As a new mother, Hull has benefited from knowledge shared by friends and family about the experience of being pregnant and sustaining life. In addition to the immaterial support she continues to receive, she has gained access to the secondhand circular economy of baby clothes. The Zero Waste Mothering blouse embraces this economy and reimagines postpartum and maternity-wear, beyond the notoriously dowdy, limited-use garments, further reinforcing the project’s sustainable goals.

In direct contrast to fast fashion’s speed, disposability, and encouragement of consumerism, zero and low waste design is increasingly present in dialogue and practice within sustainable fashion initiatives. Siting the output of her creative research in fine arts spaces, Hull initiates public dialogue on everyday dress in an effort to facilitate critical response to existing value systems, which often disregard the environmental and social impacts of the fashion industry.

Margaret Hull is an artist working in textiles, performance, and installation. Hull has an MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art and a BFA from Maryland Institute College of Art. She has been awarded residencies in Léhon, France, AZ West in Joshua Tree, California, Ox-Bow School of Art in Saugatuck, Michigan, Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, Vermont, Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in Deer Isle, Maine, and the Icelandic Textile Center in Blönduós, Iceland. Her work has been exhibited at the New Orleans Museum of Art, Cranbrook Art Museum, and Wasserman Projects, among other venues. She is Assistant Professor and Area Coordinator in the Fashion Design and Merchandising program at Wayne State University.

Learn more about Margaret Hull here.