Maggy Johnston with her garment Material Girl at the McKee Gallery. Photo: Peter Gibbs.

Maggy’s art takes stand against fashion waste


Nelson artist Maggy Johnston says that it’s time to take a stand against the carbon dioxide output from the international clothing industry.

Her exhibition in the McKee gallery at The Suter delivers this message in three parts and will culminate in an unfurling of a massive ball of fabric in Nelson’s CBD later this month.

In ‘Fashion Conscious? Fashion Conscience?’ Maggy takes $5 T-shirts, imported from Bangladesh, and adds designer labels – the perceived value and social position that implies raising the price to extreme levels.

In ‘Material Girl’, the centrepiece of the exhibition, the artist has taken cuttings from old clothing to make a dramatic dress more than three metres long, manipulating it to create an impression of high fashion value and opulence.

The third part of the exhibition is ‘Rolling Stone’.

Maggy is in attendance at the exhibition every day until November 23, working her way through a mountain of discarded clothing which would otherwise be thrown into landfill.

The clothing is cut into strips, then crocheted into a long rope and added to a huge ball of fabric.

Maggy invites viewers to join her in this project.

At the conclusion of the exhibition, a video project will document the unrolling of the ball through the heart of Nelson as an illustration of the growing size of the issues caused by the fast fashion industry.

Enough is Enough continues in the McKee gallery until November 24.