Lara Warson
graduate of Willem de Kooning Academy, Rotterdam


Graduating in times of lockdown forced me to search for new approaches. It made me look at my surroundings with a different perspective and led me to collect forgotten objects around the house. By attaching these to a mannequin, silhouettes were created that I couldn’t have drawn by hand that easily.

To get a deeper insight of what I was doing, I based my research on upcycling and how it could be used as a design method to merge sustainable and sculptural fashion.
When upcycling with existing objects, each one contains symbolic associations depending on societal values, time, culture, etc. So these associations needed to be in line with the message I wanted to convey.

From the beginning of my graduation year, I knew that I wanted to address the topic of climate change – as the fashion industry plays a significant role in the cause of it.
This led me to research different types of climate activists. By selecting objects that relate to multiple causes and results of climate change, I formed the base of my eco-warrior collection. Representing activists against air pollution, the rising sea level, melting glaciers, deforestation and a human barricade.