Thursday, September 9, 2010

Kevin Kramp retrospective at Textile Center

[Originally posted at online]

It was hard to miss Kevin Kramp's collection during Voltage: Fashion Amplified earlier this year. More than likely, your mind was blown, your eyes were wide, and you definitely had an opinion about the collection which ended with a 155-foot scarf looped around the neck of each model.

[The 40-foot scarf, pre-finale, at Voltage 2010; photo by Digital Crush]

The local designer, who only last year returned to his hometown after spending a decade abroad studying design in London and New York, specializes in luxe avant-garde men's knitwear, and has amassed all kinds of awards (winner of a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship to Brazil; finalist in the L'Oreal Professionnel: 100 Years of Colour competition; a finalist in a Nu-Look t-shirt design contest) and press in top international fashion magazines.

Kramp's most recent honor: being awarded with a Jerome Grant for Fiber Artists at the Textile Center. As part of that honor, his collected work from Voltage and beyond - all of which is machine-knit by the designer himself - will be on display at the Textile Center. "It looks like a fashion museum exhibiting a mini-retrospective of Kevin Kramp," he explains succinctly. It's also a great chance to see the detail of the collection up close (or see it if you missed him at Voltage).

[Voltage 2010 lookbook photo by Stephanie Colgan]

Featuring such an of-the-moment, innovative designer such as Kramp is quite the departure for the Textile Center. It's fair to say there's been a generational gap within the local community of textile and knitting arts, and designers like Kramp could help bridge this gap. Kramp adds, "I do think it's a good thing to see and surprise people with my work, the possibilities of knitting, and to recontextualize the Textile Center in their minds."

[Photo via]

As an added bonus for Kramp fans, he'll be making a small range of knit scarves available for the first time in the Textile Center shop. (Wool and silk with nylon and Lurex combinations in two styles at $60 and $75 each.) So even if you can't pull off an oversized, deep-V cowl-neck sweater, you can definitely rock one of his scarves.

Show details: Free opening reception 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, September 10 at Textile Center, 3000 University Av. SE., Mpls, 612-436-0464, Kramp will also appear at the annual Textile Center gala "Hot Art Cool Jazz" on Friday, September 24 at 7 p.m. (Note: he will not be showing any work in the live runway wearable-art segment.)

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