Elizabeth Tolson brings us another intriguing custom design titled ‘In the Presence of Myself.’ Tolson works in the realm of fabric, soft circuitry and electronics. Her ‘Vessle’ series was discussed in a previous Design Faves article.
With ‘In the Presence of Myself’ the critical lens shifts form examining women within a social framework to the individual within the social world. The costume addresses body-shaming, as well as the physical and emotional strain of trying to assimilate to universal standards.
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One main feature of the costume is its concentric light-rings centrally located on the torso that Kaleidoscopes in and out toward and away from the performer. The lights are intentionally place on the interior of the costume to indicate self-contemplation. New York-choreographer, Emily Smith (one of the performer in this series) is able to manipulate the costume so that it entirely obscures her body. The extension becomes a fifth limb of insecurity, exaggerating, concealing and altering the actual body.