Joseph Arruejo


The theme that underpins this collection stems from a dual exploration of ideas – on the forefront of the ideation was the exploration of trauma response, and secondary to this the concept of nostalgia which juxtaposed the darker tones associated with trauma. The garments created for this collection were developed with trauma responses that bear personal resonance or that have been experienced in some form. Among a vast variety of responses, one may find instances of hyper-independence and over/high-functioning, dissociation, emotional intellectualization, self-isolation, and fawning. Nostalgia, though secondary to the main theme, is a subtle layer to the collection that evokes a feeling of lightness that counters the darker tones of the main theme. Both themes explore a sense of temporal reverie, but both evoke different reactions. The gravity of trauma meeting the warm felt reminiscence of nostalgia aided in the creation of this collection. This collection was driven by a conceptual theme, but the pieces themselves, while still connected to trauma, are loosely tethered to this idea visually. Each iteration in this collection draws on and is informed by the intricate ideas of trauma, the collection avoids overt replication of these ideas. The complexities of trauma were used to guide and determine certain design choices to associate the collection with trauma itself, while still maintaining a degree of aesthetic. Through this play between themes, the collection emerges as a view on the enduring interplay of memory, emotion, and the human psyche.