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Face Off: The Provocation and Possibilities of Face Masks and Head Coverings
13 January 2021 @ 11:45 am – 14 January 2021 @ 11:45 am GMT
Join Fashion Forward Co-Founders Sara Emilia Bernat and Doris Domoszlai-Lantner as they speak on the first panel of the day for the free online symposium ‘Face Off: The Provocation and Possibilities of Face Masks and Head Coverings‘. Taking place on 13 and 14 January 2021, the event organised by Manchester Fashion Institute will explore the agency of face masks and head coverings across different chronologies, cultures and geographies.
Disposable face masks, made of non-woven fabric, have been a standard component of personal protective gear (PPE) in medicine since the 1960s. Although they offer better protection and filtration than reusable masks made of woven textiles, they also have various negative social and environmental effects that have been exacerbated by the 2020 Covid19 pandemic.
From the use of forced labor in the production process, to price-gouging and shortages on the market, and microplastics pollution of both land and oceanic environments, it has become increasingly evident that the status quo surrounding these masks is untenable in the long run.
Utilising the bevy of information that was generated as a direct result of the pandemic, this keynote will call into question the sustainability of disposable face masks, while weighing possible solutions to mitigate the harm they have already caused, and will continue to cause the planet should production and consumption remain unchecked.
Face Off brings together an international group of academics, artists, curators and fashion practitioners to reflect on the longstanding physical and psychological importance that face masks and head coverings have for many of the world’s cultures.