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MODUS Hosts: Unfolding Inter-local Practice

Onomatopee 148.3.1

MODUS is a platform and international network for expanded fashion practice centering around a glossary of practices: an ongoing collection of verbs that describe new ways of thinking, being and doing fashion. Founded in 2018 and led by London based designer and educator Ruby Hoette and curator and writer Caroline Stevenson, MODUS generates critical conversation and curiosity around fashion as an everyday practice with social, political, economic and environmental implications. MODUS produces publications, events and projects in collaboration with Onomatopee Projects, Eindhoven. 

MODUS Hosts is year-long series which serves as an opportunity to showcase the methods and modes of production of practitioners exploring fashion in the expanded field. For the first iteration of MODUS Hosts, we are delighted to work with studio practice CAULFIELD—SRIKLAD to present Unfolding Inter-local Practice, an installation and online exchange during Dutch Design Week 2021 at Onomatopee Projects.

Unfolding Inter-local Practice is a collection of embodied expressions, illustrating an emerging design methodology, a process, a practice. The installation explores the cultural memory held within the garments inherited from a dual Thai-Irish family archive and examines the contrasting dressing practices associated with the tailored suit and the Theravada Buddhist robe. Through the embodied experience of dressing and undressing in these garments, this methodology engages the intimate process of thinking through materials. Drawing insights from folding, covering, layering, tying and wrapping, transforms the cultural memory associated with these garments into a space of cultural imagination. This is a present day inter-place* and provides a new starting point for design aimed at creating a sense of belonging and sense of inter-locality**.


*inter-place: a union and integration of multiple places that shape experience
** inter-local: the process of belonging, through the union and integration of local experience



CAULFIELD—SRIKLAD is a studio practice by brother and sister Daniel and Siranee Caulfield-Sriklad. With backgrounds in fashion design and communication, academia and industry, our practice is interdisciplinary. We understand the act of dressing as ritual and fabric and the body as interdependent. We design for the body as a system of possible actions, through an awareness of being, becoming and belonging, thus creating conditions of possibility and embodied consciousness.



Onomatopee 148, Ruby Hoette, Caroline Stevenson, Roland Brauchli, 2018

MODUS - a platform for expanded fashion practice

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This publication marks the launch of MODUS: a first step towards a network for expanded fashion practice. The central thread is a glossary of practices - a developing lexicon of habits, methods, rules, techniques, repetitions and actions - that together, points towards a shared manual for expanded practice. Into this glossary four essays are woven from academics and practitioners revealing questions and challenges as well as suggesting approaches or perspectives that expanded fashion practices might offer.

We hope that this document be read not as a definitive explanation but as a live provocation, that it might be used as a tool to facilitate conversations between the practitioners working in this expanded field and writers/theorists from other disciplines ranging from sociology, cultural and critical theory to politics and economics. We invite you to engage with it as a working model: add notes in the spaces, highlight and draw connections between ideas. It is a blueprint for new ways of thinking, being and doing fashion which forms the foundation of the MODUS project.


Ruby Hoette is a designer/researcher. Her critical and experimental approach proposes alternate modes of engaging with and producing fashion. By framing the garment as a unique artefact carrying traces of social, cultural and economic interactions and transactions her work explores fashion in context and unpicks the complex relationships between object and system.
Caroline Stevenson is a London based curator and writer working at the intersection of fashion and art. She works closely with emerging and established artists to research and develop new projects and to create space for experimentation, dialogue and exchange. She has produced projects and programmed events for Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art, ICA (London), Tate Modern and Tenderbooks (London). Caroline teaches in the Cultural and Historical Studies department at London College of Fashion and publishes writing on artists’ practices.
Roland Brauchli is an artist graphic designer, working across the fields of print, design and art. He collaborates with artists, writers, curators and publishers on publications and exhibitions through his work, which focuses on the printed page.
T’ai Smith is Associate Professor of Art History at The University of British Columbia, Vancouver. Her research considers textile media and concepts through philosophical and economic discourses. She has published in various journals and museum catalogs, including Art Journal, Grey Room, Texte zur Kunst, ZMK (Zeitschrift für Medien- und Kulturforschung), the Tate Modern and MoMA. Author of Bauhaus Weaving Theory: From Feminine Craft to Mode of Design (University of Minnesota Press, 2014), she is currently drafting a book manuscript titled Fashion After Capital.
Ricarda Bigolin is a Senior Lecturer, designer and researcher in Fashion Design at RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia. Her practice investigates the performative, sensorial and functional potential of fashion via the use of expanded and critical strategies to inspire new expressions and ways to practice fashion in and outside of fashion systems.
Janice Miller is a fashion theorist and Head of Department of Critical and Historical Studies at Kingston School of Art, Kingston University. Her research interests focus on the role of fashion and embodiment in performances of all kinds. Author of Fashion and Music (Berg, 2011) she is currently working on her second book Makeup: Cosmetics from Everyday to Catwalk to be published by Bloomsbury in 2020, as well as articles on fashion apps, body hair and music video.
Ellen Sampson is a material culture researcher, curator and artist who uses practice-based research to explore the relationships between clothing and the body, both in museums and archives, and in everyday life. She is currently Polaire Weismann Curatorial Fellow at the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.
Alexis Romano is a historian of 20th-century fashion and visual culture, with specific interests in photography, and everyday, subjective aspects of dress; and is currently writing a book on prêt-à-porter and women in postwar France to be published by Bloomsbury in 2019. She is a visiting lecturer at Parsons, the New School for Design and co-founder of the Fashion Research Network.

170 x 240mm / 6.96 x 9.44 inches portrait
Ruby Hoette, Caroline Stevenson
Ruby Hoette, Caroline Stevenson, (D&K) Ricarda Bigolin, Janice Miller, T'ai Smith and Ellen Sampson & Alexis Romano.
Roland Brauchli
sewn and glued
Dust-jacket: 115 gr. Peyr Surbalin Cadena, Diamond White. Inside: 100 gr. Munken Polar Rough.
Tielen, Boxtel (NL)
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Onomatopee project manager
Freek Lomme
Photography of the book
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