What do young people think about Europe and today’s challenges in Europe? That’s what our ‘Dress to Protest’ workshops for young Europeans are about. In May the very first edition took place in collaboration with Fashion Clash and volunteers who worked in fashion before and students from Maastricht Academy of Fine Arts and Design (MAFAD). We’re excited to announce that the workshop will have several follow-ups in September! With the imaginative power of fashion, a group of high school students shared their visions, personal stories and messages for Europe. Continue reading and learn more about the designs made during the latest workshop.
Three guys with something to say designed a t-shirt showing a figure who can’t say a thing. The pressure of social media and its popularity ratings on young people’s lives, represented by the slogans, is contrasted starkly against the bright yellow figure, which shows “someone being censured,” according to Jack. “People are putting hashtags like #SlayQueen, #100 and #bruh all over Instagram,” he says, “and whenever people use them, they get loads of ‘likes’, and tons of people who ‘like’ the post, without even paying attention to the content” he continued. “That’s why we put them here, with our guy who’s got X’s for eyes to symbolize this exaggeration.”
Editor’s note: while a new generation of popular movements such as young climate protesters or the yellow vests, which are often founded or gain momentum online, are all about speaking up, the group’s t-shirt is a reminder that censure is not just something imposed on us by others. We also censure ourselves to fit in, to score the most ‘likes’. Add a hashtag that’s already viral, and what you choose to say – or not – is swept up in the storm.