Wendy Tremayne
Since 2004
Works in Brooklyn United States of America

Discussions (3) Opportunities (1) Events (1) Jobs (0)


Sun Jan 01, 2006 00:00 - Mon Dec 26, 2005

Deconstructing the Consumer Through Creativity

Brooklyn, New York -On February 12, 2006 from 2 to 7pm Swap-O-Rama-Rama, a seasonal clothing swap and series of do-it-yourself workshops in which a community explores reuse through the recycling of used clothing, holds its second seasonal event at Galapagos Art Space in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

The first public Swap-O-Rama-Rama was held on October 9, 2005 and was attended by 500 people who together recycled an estimated 4,000lbs of clothing. Swap-O-Rama-Rama is not your regular clothing swap. The event features an entire day of how-to workshops, on site thematic workstations and a gathering of skilled designers, artists and do-it-yourselfers brought together to share their knowledge.

Workshops are taught by local artists of all calibers and cover wide range of skill sets and material uses. The swap offers technology based workshops that demonstrate how to replace pockets with metallic fiber for the purpose of creating a wearable faraday cage to block RFID tag readers, and explore playable sonic fabric created from recycled cassette tape. Swap workshops also introduce completely new textiles. Kate Sweater offers a how-to that transforms plastic grocery bags into a new textile for wallets, bags and shoes. Traditional crafts like embroidery, knitting, beading and applique can also be found. If guests want to be hands-on they can slide over to any number of do-it-yourself workstations. These include a sewing stations with several sewing machines run by knowledgeable clothing and costume designers; an iron-on station for downloading images off the web and transferring them directly onto clothing; silk screening, and decoration stations for working with beads, buttons, and a variety of accoutrements. Guests pay a $10 entry fee to attend the event. Once they’re inside all of the materials for creativity are free.

DIYers, and artists working with recycling and wearables are encouraged to sign up to teach a workshop (wendy\_at sign\_gaiatreehouse.com).

The core of the swap is the gigantic piles of free clothing sorted into categories: pants, shirts, skirts, sweaters etc. These piles are the collective total of each guest’s contribution of one bag of unwanted clothes. This contribution is required to attend the event. Once inside guests are encouraged to take home ‘as much clothing as you can carry.’

Should a swapper find a moment of downtime they can be entertained by on-theme performances and video documentaries that feature the works of non-local artists who are creating recycled wearables. Or they can participate in a recycled clothing fashion show featuring creations made on site at Swap-O-Rama-Rama. Eco conscious prizes are given out to all who walk the runway. All left over clothing is donated to St. Martin DePorres Shelter.

Swap-O-Rama-Rama was created by artist Wendy Tremayne as a response to her feelings about consumerism in our culture. She sites textile waste (8.75 billion lbs per year), the use synthetic fibers, and the marketing efforts of the fashion industry as factors that are contributing to a deteriorating way of life. “Our over consumption destroys the environment and wrecks economies elsewhere around the globe. This is perpetuated by the fashion industry as they encourage the purchase of new goods through a constantly changing vision of what is in style. Through advertising we are asked to view shopping as a creative endeavor, when in actuality it is only the designers who play a creative role in the process. The consumer’s creativity is simply in the selection. The craft involved in the making of clothing, once viewed as a creative endeavor, is now left to the machine, which manufactures most of the clothing made today. The average person is ill equipped for sewing, and distant from the creative process due to lack of experience. After goods are purchased, consumers become advertising billboards as they tote logos and labels on all areas of the body. Branding, in its current form, creates distinct social divisions as labels broadcast the spending power of the individual. This separates consumers into categories that reflect the size of their wallet rather than the expanse of their creativity.” Swap-O-Rama-Rama offers a way to obtain new/used clothing, learn and create while developing community and this occurs without the use of resources. Swap-O-Rama-Rama is one of many works that Wendy created to speak to issues of consumerism. Additional works can be viewed on her web site : www.gaiatreehouse.com

The future plans for Swap-O-Rama-Rama include four swaps per year, with one event in every season and an annual Swap-O-Rama-Rama fashion show featuring the recycled clothing created by the events attendees. One goal is to offer free cloth labels to cover up existing branding which read ‘modified by me,’ ‘100\% recycled,’ and ‘resist branding.’

Swap-O-Rama-Rama has received funding support from Black Rock Arts, a community resource for interactive arts that sprouted from the makers of the art festival and utopian experiment Burning Man. Swap-O-Rama-Rama is fiscally sponsored by New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA). Organizations that donate to 501Cs can make a tax-deductible donation to Swap-O-Rama-Rama through NYFA.



Call for Collaborative Entries: Clothing Reuse

Sat Jul 09, 2005 00:00

Wendy Tremayne invites collaborating artists to participate in Swap-O-Rama-Rama, a public community event in which recycling and reuse are explored through the exchange and modification of used clothing. Artists are invited to design and teach a public how-to workshop that demonstrates the reuse potential of used clothing.

Workshops should be practical demonstrations that teach others how to modify used clothing into a new and reusable form. The modified item may be, but is not restricted to, wearable items. Workshops can range in length from 15 to 45 minutes and may focus on the fall/winter season though this is not required. The abundant clothing provided at the swap can be used for your workshop. If your project is selected you must be willing to teach your workshop to a public audience.

Submissions: Please send original workshop ideas to wendy@gaiatreehouse.com . Include necessary expenses. There is a small budget for supplies however all are encouraged to use the abundant resources provided - used clothing. Workshops will be chosen based on innovation with and use of recycled materials. Previously designed ideas may be reused for this project. If your workshop is chosen you will be paid a small fee as a token of appreciation. A significant press and promotion effort will include your bio, link and a description of your workshop. Limit entries to approximately 1000 words. Images are welcome preferably as links rather than attachments.

Deadline: Submit workshop proposals by August 26th, 2005. All selected works will be notified by September 5th, 2005. You must be able to teach your workshop on a Sunday afternoon in October 2005 (final date TBA).

The October 2005 Swap-O-Rama-Rama is enabled by a grant from Black Rock Arts, a community resource for interactive arts and a non-profit art funding organization for Burning Man. Swap-O-Rama-Rama is also fiscally sponsored by New York Foundation for the Arts.

Wendy Tremayne - http://gaiatreehouse.com
Swap-0-Rama-Rama - http://gaiatreehouse.com/swaporamarama.htm
Black Rock Arts - http://blackrockarts.org
NYFA - http://nyfa.org


A new thread on the response to Paradox of Political Art

Hello Rhizome,
You may have caught the thread between myself and Lee on this subject.
We made nice and concluded our back n forth on this one. This post I'm
submitting today was not written by me, it's from a friend of mine who
asked me to post for him. He felt strongly about the subject. If you
reply, I'll forward the reply to him.

Paradox of Political Art
Political artworks have always been problematic for me, especially

those with a hierarchical structure of morals or ethics. Aside from
the fact that they are visual, they demonstrate no difference from the
verbal discourses of various social and political organizations. Since
the art world is a small, exclusive community, one cannot help but to
question the effectiveness of such political evangelism. I also would
like to discuss below the validity of artist as a political position.

Political art as a conceptual art movement was born in the late 60's,
and continued on strongly into the 90's. It probably reached its height
in 1993 when Whitney Museum had its "political biennial." After
that,there was a backlash to political correctness. Then, 9-11 came.
Politics is once again in vogue.



Right back atcha: In Response to: the response to: Re: RHIZOME_RAW: Response: Paradox of Political Art

Hi Lee,
Thanks for the reply post.. and here's my reply. I do believe we have
some unfinished business.
> Good ideas are good ideas especially for social change. copy and
> repeat.
couldnt agree more
> Even if an artist is doing it strictly as a way to gain attention for
> themselves then great.
> If its powerful and touches the masses then great. Advertising
> executives do it every day and get paid top dollar.
> I dont think you should have turned down the book offer.
> You don't seem to be alone in the naked people spelling words for
> political causes art movement.
> I ask why? and I am wondering why you think you are the first to
> think of this sort of "nudist" performance art as political dissent.

Who said I thought that I was the only one? I copied someone else, a
group in California, sent them an email saying "good idea, I'm gonna do
it in NYC." Didnt you notice that I posted pictures of other groups who
did this on my site?
This is the reason I turned down the book. Because someone else did
believe that they were the first to use nudist performance art as
political dissent and I didnt want to be part of that claim. They
decided to claim this 'art form' (if you can even call it that) by
publishing a book of all the people who used nudes to spell words to
express themselves against the war. I fought with them for a whole
year. First I tried to submit an entry for the book which included an
essay on how dangerous it is to claim such a medium by publishing a
book. When they wouldnt publish the essay I refused to be in the book.

This is not about validating any form as art. In truth, I think
spelling words with nudes is a rather sophomoric medium (however
complicated to produce). What matters is that at the time it was done,
it was affective. It raised awareness.
> you said
>> This was at a time when dissent was barely on the radar.
> Whos radar???? Your Radar ????????? Dissent >>>>>
> Its out there,

On February 7, 2003 there were no reports of dissent in the major media
and we were about to go to war. Because NO BUSH was so widely covered
by the media other people in all parts of the world knew that some
Americans were against the war. I received emails from nearly every
country on earth telling me how happy they were to know that Americans
gave a shit. This matters! And, the massive media coverage of NO BUSH
inspired groups in other countries to do the same. This also matters.
If it pleases you, dont call it art so that you wont subject it to this
scrutiny and can see it for its impact. Call it a form of protest. It
doesn't matter, what matters it that it was affective.

On Feb 7 2003 dissent was not in the papers. We were about to go to war
and it was very quiet.
> it never stops. I'm not trying to give you a hard time but I think
> you are being a bit naive and the Newspaper has inflated your ego.

This is quite silly, I think you are putting your own desired story in
here. I turned down a book offer, and although over 500 people emailed
me to volunteer to do the "next nude piece" I have not done the next
piece. I did not feel that it had enough relevance or would have the
same impact and I really have little interest in this medium. I did it
at the time because I was the right context for conveying the right
message. And I did not repeat it just because I could even though the
media was waiting for me to. Instead I thought about what project might
be affective and since I had no idea I felt was worth producing I sat
around for over a year letting the media interest fade and I instead
helped other people do their projects. Does this sound like my ego is
guiding my decisions? I also turned down offers to go on talk shows and
interviews with the press because I felt they wanted to play ping pong
with me in a political arena.

I think that this debate is falling prey to the very same subject that
the first email kicked off. It's not about validating someone's art or
being ego based, or fame, or any of this crap. All art is political!

It's about anyone, artist or not, using art to convey important
messages in a time when we need social change. Anyone who can, should.
And they should not be attacked for it, especially by artists! Art
doesnt belong to the talented, the famous, .... its available to
everyone alike. Finding flaw in political art seems like a really good
way to avoid doing it yourself. Judging it only keeps people further
from doing it making it unsafe ground to tread.

I dont want to begin a debate about Burning Man. But it serves a good
example of how art is for all. At Burning Man all artists are given the
same amount of real estate (endless amounts, however much they want) to
create. They dont have to be someone or pass some test. The famous, the
unfamous, the experienced and novice all have equal space. The result
is a community that uses art to express themselves in their daily lives
(at least their lives at the event). You just cant have this when
artists set bars on what the right context is, what's to ego based,
etc.. This things are the result of our current society's use of art:
commercial use.

> The other projects you are working on that I saw on your website are
> interesting and i encourage you to keep doing it but you are not
> alone. Have you brought your art to the frontlines of and angry
> blackblock taking on the cops. Your project was very safe outside of
> some risk of frostbite of the butt.

Safe. I doubt it. I did this project in NYC post 9-11 when security was
at an all time high. There was nothing safe about it. I also recruited
women I had never met. I had an awful lot of responsibility to bear
including a tide of nasty emails that I personally responded to from
pro Bushers who would be happy to see shot down by the very next
terrorist to hit NYC.

> Have you ever been to Dachau? The Nazis did much of their human
> testing there, they learned a lot about what a human could with
> withstand. Cold, Heat, Pressure. Although alot of people died there,
> they never used the gas chambers. Probably the saddest place I have
> ever visited.

What's the point of this comment? Are you defending Dachau because it
produced medial information?
> The VOMITORIUM sounds like fun., I would recommend to not ware your
> good shoes.
> Why do it in a controlled location? why not do it in a high-end uptown
> restaurant and not pay the bill because everyone got sick.
> )))))))))))))))))))))
> Once fame sets in there is another agenda that an artist must consider
> and that is their business of artmaking, their assistants, dealers,
> agents.

Not if you are not doing it for money or fame you dont.
> When it comes to political art, dont give a damn what ANYone else
> says, just do it until you learn how to not get arrested or until you
> sell out or until there is no war or pain and suffering and cold and
> power and ego and money and fame. Make it because something inside you
> is driving your spirit to make a difference.
> For some political art is just working for a childrens charity
> collecting money on the streets. Basically begging as performance art.
> For some painting landscapes with no underlying political meaning is
> more powerful than your average period piece protest slogan one liner.
> I personally think 15 years from now George Bush 1 and 2 will be
> mostly forgotten about. Either times will get better or they will get
> worse.
> Sorry for the ramble but I think you are out of touch with reality.
> i do think though that this thread has inspired some important content
> for consumption.

I think you've assumed a lot about me, my motives and project. Perhaps
my reply will help you see that. to date I have not done an art project
for money, even when I could. I'd rather prostitute myself in other
ways like having a corporate day job to earn money so that I never have
to bow to any agenda when making art.
I think you have my confused with someone who has an ego.

> Eat it up... spit it out...or swallow and shit it out later.
> Cheers,
> Lee
Right back atcha,
> Infiltrate and Take Over


Response: Paradox of Political Art

In Response to: Paradox of Political Art:

It just makes me angry that in the middle of everything that is going
on, to attack 'political