Dr. Jeff is clearly a Renaissance man; he is a senior lecturer in anatomy and pathology at Australia’s The University of Adelaide, music graduate, opera aficionado, and designs and sews astonishing men’s formal dress jackets from unusual textiles. He bought an assortment of fabrics from Britex Fabrics during a visit to San Francisco, and tailored these jackets. He says, “The excitement of the opening night and the Baroque opera Divos, the castrati, inspires this collection of flamboyant and extravagant textile art and music installation. My art takes an ‘iconic’ item of male clothing (a suit jacket) and entertains the stereotype of masculine image, constructing jackets with opulent fabrics which are often entirely unsuitable for traditional tailoring techniques. I have to ‘audition’ my fabrics for the ‘roles’ they will play, before I can begin to cut and sew. The ‘roles’ are inspired by the personae and art of the extraordinary baroque opera divos, the castrati. Some jackets are extremely painful and difficult to make. Some fabrics are demanding and behave like impudent superstars. Some projects end in disaster with the fabric and concept unable to meet in the performance of the finished item! Whether an opening night or stage production, what we wear and how and why we choose our clothes is a dramatic statement on life’s stage. Our clothing is a personal, anthropological and political statement about how we wish to be known. Personal identity is constructed as we look, and are looked at, by each other. This is highly gendered in our society, and the rules and morals which underpin this glancing are not always clear cut.” You can see more of his work at Opera Night Couture.
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