"(...) the roots are always found in the problematics around the female body being seen as an object there to please others."

Text: Lisa Carlsson

 

Swedish based fashion designer Minna Palmqvist works in the fluid space between fashion and art. Her garments, objects and installations spill over into each other and refuses to be defined as either or. The work centers around the female body, questioning beauty standards and the normative ways in which we define women.

 
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Manifesto

 
MINNA PALMQVIST BRAND MANIFESTO
The result of discussions and co-writing with Lisa Carlsson


WE BALANCE ON THE EDGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN
Apply gloss with a perfect touch and cover our faces. We are ambivalent.
Together we form a mutual core
With our strong, broken hearts beating for change
and our feet stuck in the mud.
We sharpen our teeth and bite our tongues.
Mrs. she's too big now she's too thin. You didn't know we had it in us.

WE WALK A THIN LINE BETWEEN STRENGTH AND DECAY;
Tailored jackets bursting at the seams and laced bras dropped below our knees.
Take it to the edge, push it over, make it fall.
We sleep soundly in silk pyjamas, dreaming of sisterhood.
We are taught to keep up appearances,
to make ourselves smaller.
But it is not becoming to make less of ourselves than we are.

LIGHTNESS AND WEIGHT;
With t-shirts covered in stains, we shine bright like diamonds.
Running fast in sharp stiletto heels to keep up, wanting to belong.
Moving slowly in worn-out sneakers with a burning desire to be left alone.
We mold our big hungry bodies like clay and our hips don't lie.
You offered us harmony if things were done your way.
We decided to take the fight.

FACADE AND REALITY.
We are both fact and fiction.
So tangled up we sometimes don’t know what’s what.
We speak our minds with lipstick smudged on our teeth.
We age and wake up like this. Flawless.
Sweating crystals and breathing hard.
And we don’t think you can handle this.

OUR BODIES ARE NOT YOURS TO JUDGE.
OUR MINDS ARE NO-ONE’S TO REPRESS.
WE BREAK DOWN. WE RISE. WE DECONSTRUCT.
And if you complain once more
you'll meet an army of me.



______________________________
References, quotes, declarations of love and paraphrases:

BRITNEY: Piece of Me /// BJÖRK: Mutual Core + Bachelorette + Army of Me /// JENNIE ABRAHAMSON: The War ///
CHIMAMANDA NGOZI ADICHIE /// EDITH SÖDERGRAN /// RIHANNA: Diamonds ///PLANNINGTOROCK: Jam
/// SHAKIRA: Hips don’t lie /// PFT Magazine description /// BEYONCÉ: ***Flawless ///DESTINY’s CHILD: Bootylicious
 
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Bursting seams and breaking facades. No matter if the result is a ready-to-wear collection or an art installation, the roots are always found in the problematics around the female body being seen as an object there to please others. In the world of fashion as well as in the society at large.

By slowing things down she offers resistance and explores how to work and function in an industry of which she is highly critical. But she still has a deep love for fashion as a way of expressing identity. And a love for people taking up space in a system not made for them.